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The Pennsylvania 
Horticultural Society 

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To which is now first added, 


" By all those token Flowers that tell 
What words can never speak so well." 






Successors to Carey & Co. 


Printed by Haswell, Barrington, and Haswell. 



When Nature laughs out in all the triumphs of 
Spring, it may be said, without a metaphor, that, 
in her thousand varieties of flowers, we see the 
sweetest of her smiles ; that, through them, we 
comprehend the exultation of her joys; and that, 
by them, she wafts her songs of thanksgiving to 
the heaven above her, which repays her tribute 
of gratitude with looks of love. Yes, flowers, 
have their language. Theirs is an oratory, that 
speaks in perfumed silence, and there is tender- 
ness, and passion, and even the lightheadedness 
of mirth, in the variegated beauty of their voca- 
bulary. To the poetical mind, they are not mute 
to each other ; to the pious, they are not mute to. 


their Creator : and ours shall be the office, in this 
little volume, to translate their pleasing language, 
and to show that no spoken word can approach 
to the delicacy of sentiment to be inferred from a 
flower seasonably offered ; that the softest impres- 
sions may be thus conveyed without offence, and 
even profound grief alleviated, at a moment when 
the most tuneful voice would grate harshly on the 
ear, and when the stricken soul can be soothed only 
by unbroken silence. 

In treating of so gay a subject, we will not make 
a parade of our learning, to tell our fair readers 
what fine things Pliny has said upon it ; or, in the 
spirit of prosing, write a crabbed treatise upon the 
Egyptian hieroglyphics. We will even spare them 
a dissertation upon the Floral Alphabet of tbe effe- 
minate Chinese ; they had, and have, their flowers 
and their feelings, their emblems and their ecstacies. 
Let them enjoy them. We shall do no more than 
rove through the European Garden, to cull its beau- 
ties, to arrange them into odoriferous significance, 
and to teach our refined and purifying science to 
•those fair beings, the symbols of whose mortal 
beauty are but inadequately found in the most glori- 
ous flowers, and whose mental charms cannot be 


tluiy typified, till we shall have reached those abodes 
where reigns everlasting spring, and where decay is 

But little study will be requisite for the science 
which we teach. Nature has been before us. We 
must, however, premise two or three rules. When a 
flower is presented in its natural position, the senti- 
ment is to be understood affirmatively ; when re- 
versed, negatively. For instance, a rose-bud, with 
its leaves and thorns, indicates fear with hope ; but, 
if reversed, it must be construed as saying " you 
may neither fear nor hope." Again, divest the 
same rose-bud of its thorns, and it permits the most 
sanguine hope ; deprive it of its petals, and retain 
the thorns, and the worst fears may be entertained. 
The expression of every flower may be thus varied 
by varying its state or position. The Marigold is 
emblematical of pain ; place it on the head and it 
signifies trouble of mind ; on the heart, the pangs of 
love ; on the bosom, the disgusts of ennui. The 
pronoun /is expressed by inclining the symbol to 
the right, and the pronoun thou by inclining it to 
the left. 

These are a few of the rudiments of our signifi- 
cant language. We call upon Friendship and Love 


to unite their discoveries with ours ; for it is in the 
power only of these sweetest sentiments of our na- 
ture to bring to perfection what they have so beauti- 
fully invented, the mystical, yet pleasing, links of 
intelligence, that bind soul to soul, in the tender and 
quiet harmony of the one, or in the more impas- 
sioned felicity of the other. 

By way of conclusion, it may be proper to remark, 
that though this work is founded on a small French 
volume, yet, from the alterations which have been 
introduced, it cannot, strictly speaking, be called a 


If we may believe modern interpreters, the 
language of flowers was known to the ancients, 
and it would appear that the Greeks understood 
the art of communicating a secret message through 
the medium of a bouquet. It is only necessary to 
consult the Dream-book of Artemidorus to be con- 
vinced that every individual flower of which the 
wreaths of the ancients were composed conveyed 
some particular meaning. At all events, it is evi- 
dent that garlands were conspicuous in the emble- 
matic devices of antiquity. 

Our English poets have not neglected to avail 
themselves of the emblematic language of flowers. 


On this subject, a writer in one of our periodical 
publications made, a few years since, the following 
observations : — . 

Shakspeare has evinced in several of his plays 
a knowledge and a love of flowers, but in no in- 
stance has he shown his taste and judgment in 
the selection of them with greater effect than in 
forming the coronal wreath of the lovely maniac 
Ophelia. The Queen describes the garland as 
composed of crow-flowers, nettles, daisies, and long- 
purples : and there can be no question that Shak- 
speare intended them all to have an emblematic 

The crow-flower is a species of lychnis, alluded 
to by Drayton in his Polyolbion. The common 
English name is meadow lychnis, or meadow cam- 
pion. It is sometimes found double in our own 
hedge-rows, but more commonly in France ; and 
in this form we are told by Parkinson it was called 
The fay re May tie of France. It is to this name 
and to this variety that Shakspeare alludes in Ham- 

The long-purples are commonly called dead men's 
hands, or fingers. 

"Our cold maids do dead men's fingers call them." 


The daisy (or day's-eye) imports the pure virgi- 
nity, or spring of life, as being itself the virgin 
bloom of the year. 

The intermixture of nettles requires no comment. 

Admitting the correctness of this interpretation, 
the whole is an exquisite specimen of emblematic 
or picture-writing. They are all wild flowers, de- 
noting the bewildered state of the beautiful Ophe- 
lia's own faculties ; and the order runs thus, with 
the meaning of each term beneath : 

Ceow-flowees. Nettles. Dairies. Long-fueples. 

•Pov^ i\To,7ri Q Stuns: to Her virsin Under the cold 

J?ajreiua>ae the quick bloom hand of death. 

" A fair maid stung to the quick ; her virgin bloom under 
the cold hand of death." 

It would be difficult to find a more emblematic 
wreath for this interesting victim of disappointed 
Jove and filial sorrow. 

Flowers, the emblems and favourites of the fair, 
are not every where prized merely for their beauty 
and their perfume : in those regions where jealousy 
and custom condemn women to close imprisonment, 
and where love can employ only the language of 
looks and signs, invention has created symbolic 


phrases for expressing the sweet sentiments of the 
heart. This language is most generally used by the 
Turkish and Greek women in the Levant, and by 
the African females on the coast of Barbary. 

Castellan, in his " Letters on Greece," mentions 
that when he was passing through the lovely valley 
of Bujukderu on the Bosphorus, his attention was 
attracted by a little country pleasure-house, sur- 
rounded by a neat garden. Beneath one of the 
grated windows stood a young Turk, who, after 
playing a light prelude on the tambur, a sort of 
mandoline, sang a love-song, in which the following 
verse occurred : — 

The nightingale wanders from flower to flower, 
Seeking the rose, his heart's only prize ;* 

Thus did my love change every hour, 
Until I saw thee, light of my eyes ! 

No sooner was the song ended than a small white 
hand opened the lattice of the window, and dropped 
a bunch of flowers. The young Turk picked up 

* Alluding to the love of the nightingale for the rose, which 
is a favourite theme of the Oriental poets. The nightingale, 
a bird of passage in the East, as with us, appears at the season 
when the rose beains to blow. 


the nosegay, and appeared to read in it some secret 
message. He pressed it to his bosom, then fastened 
it in his turban, and, after making some signs to- 
wards the window, he withdrew. The young gal- 
lant appeared from his dress to be nothing more 
than a poor water-carrier. But the Turkish proverb 
says that, however high a woman may rear her 
head towards the clouds, her feet nevertheless touch 
the earth. The girl was actually the daughter of a 
rich Jew, worth a hundred thousand piastres. 

A nosegay, a garland of flowers, ingeniously 
selected, and put together for the purpose of com- 
municating in secret and expressive language the 
sentiments of the heart, is in the East called a Saam 
(salutation). It often happens that a female slave, 
the object of the Sultan's favour, corresponds openly 
with her lover merely by the various arrangement of 
flower-pots in a garden. Written love-letters would 
often be inadequate to convey an idea of the pas- 
sionate feelings which are thas expressed through 
the medium of flowers. Thus, orange flowers sig- 
nify hope ; marigolds, despair ; sunflowers, con- 
stancy ; roses, beauty ; and tulips represent the 
complaints of infidelity. 

This hieroglyphic language is known only to the 


lover and his mistress. In order to envelope it the 
more completely in the veil of secrecy, the significa- 
tions of the different flowers are changed, in con- 
formity with a preconcerted plan : for example, the 
rose is employed to express the idea which would 
otherwise be attached to the amaranth, the gilli- 
flower is substituted for the pomegranate blos- 
som, &c. 

The language of flowers is much employed in 
the Turkish harems, where the women practise it 
either for the sake of mere diversion In their 
solitude, or for the purpose of secret communica- 

La Motraie, the companion of Charles XII., and 
Lady Mary Wortley Montagu, were the first who 
gave celebrity in Europe to the language of flowers. 
The few examples cited by Lady Montagu are not 
calculated to afford a clear and accurate idea of the 
principles on which this language is founded. Its 
spirit consists not, as might naturally be supposed, 
in the connexion which fancy may trace between 
particular flowers and certain thoughts and feelings. 
Such an idea never entered the heads of the fair 
inventresses of the oriental language of flowers. 
They have contented themselves with merely taking 


a word which may happen to rhyme with the name 
of any particular flower or fruit, and then filling up 
the given rhyme with some fanciful phrase corres- 
ponding with its signification. The language there- 
fore consists not of individual words, but of whole 
phrases ; and a flower or fruit expresses an idea 
suggested by the word with which its name happens 
to rhyme. Thus, for instance, the word Armonde 
(Pear) rhymes among other words with Omonde 
(hope) ; and this rhyme is filled up as follows : — 
" Armonde — Wer bana bir Omonde ;" (Pear — Let 
me not despair.) 

The Turkish dialect, being rich in rhymes, pre- 
sents a multitude of words corresponding in sound 
with the names of flowers, or any other objects that 
may be selected ; but these rhymes are not all ad- 
mitted into the language of flowers, and the 
knowledge of this language consists in being ac- 
quainted with the proper rhyme. The vocabulary 
is not extensive, for the whole language scarcely 
exceeds a hundred signs and phrases. The cele- 
brated orientalist, Mr. Von Hammer, collected from 
the Greek and Armenian women who are permitted 
to visit the harems, many of the phrases of this 


curious language, which have been published with a 
French and German translation, in the Miscellany 
entitled " Mines of the East." 

In India, which may be regarded as the cradle of 
poetry, we are informed that it is customary to 
express, by the combination of flowers, those senti- 
ments of the heart which are regarded as too refined 
and sacred to be communicated through the common 
medium of words. The young females of Amboyna 
are singularly ingenious in the art of conversing in 
the love-language of flowers and fruits. Yet this 
language, like that employed in Turkey and in 
other parts of the East, bears no resemblance to that 
with which we have hitherto been acquainted in Eu- 
rope ; though, according to the received notion, we 
were indebted for our first knowledge of this lan- 
guage to the Crusaders and to pilgrims who visited 
the Holy Land. 

In early times it was customary in Europe to 
employ particular colours for the purpose of ex- 
pressing certain ideas and feelings. The enamoured 
knight indicated his passion by wearing a red and 
violet scarf — if he made choice of a reddish-gray 
colour, it was to denote that love bad urged him to 


the combat — on the other hand, the combination of 
yellow, green, and violet, proclaimed that the knight 
returned triumphant from the conflict, and had 
gained the reward of love. 

In France, where the symbolical meaning of 
colours was formed into a regular system, great 
importance was attached lo the art of expressing 
ideas by the selection of particular colours for 
dresses, trimmings, &c. Francis L, however, broke 
through all the rules of etiquette on this point. In 
the reign of that monarch, widows were permitted 
to wear any colours and stuffs they pleased for 
under-garments, and for gowns they were at liberty 
to choose one of two colours, a privilege which they 
had not previously enjoyed. In course of time, the 
practice of adopting colours for the purpose of 
emblematic representations gradually declined, and 
was observed only in the choice of arms and liveries, 
in which it has been retained, with certain modifi- 
cations, to the present day. 

In the ages of chivalry, red was highly esteemed 

as the colour of love, and accordingly, the rose was, 

on account of its tint, a favourite emblem. Thus, 

in the romance of Perceforet, a hat adorned with 



roses is celebrated as a favourite gift of love ; and, in 
Amadia de Gaul, the captive Oriana is represented 
as throwing to her lover a rose wet with tears, as 
the sweetest pledge of her unalterable faith. The 
various allegorical meanings which were in the 
middle ages attached to the rose are described in the 
celebrated Romaunt de la Rose, which was com- 
menced, in the year 1620, by Guillaume de Lorris, 
and finished, forty years later, by Jean de Meun. 

In the famous German Heldenbuch, or Book of 
Heroes, which is supposed to have been chiefly 
written by Henry von Ofterdingen, the Rose Gar- 
den of Wurms holds a distinguished place. The 
garden was encircled by a silken thread instead of a 
wall, and the victorious Knights who defended it 
against the encroachments of a party of giants 
were, by Princess Chrymhilde, rewarded with a 
chaplet of roses and a kiss. One of the knights, 
named Hildebrandt, is described as having accepted 
the chaplet but declined the salute. A monk, 
named Ilsan, however, who was one of the tri- 
umphant warriors, not satisfied with the rewards 
conferred on himself, demanded a chaplet and a kiss 
for each of the fifty-two monks of the convent to 
which he belonged. It is added that Chrymhilde 


granted this boon; though not until Usan had 
fought and conquered fifty-two of the offending 

In the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries, tourna- 
ments lost much of the sanguinary character which 
had previously distinguished them. They became 
merely entertainments for the celebration of court 
festivals ; and the combatants gained the prize of 
victory, not by wounds and bloodshed, but by bro- 
ken lances, the fragments of which were presented 
to them as trophies of success. It was the etiquette 
of early times for a knight, on entering the lists at 
a tournament, to beg permission to wear the colours 
of the lady to whose service he was devoted ; but 
this practice was gradually succeeded by that of 
wearing about the person any pledge of love which 
the knight solicited from his mistress, or which the 
latter spontaneously presented to him. This cus- 
tom of giving and wearing favours was kept up 
until the middle of the seventeenth century. Vari- 
ous changes of fashion took place with respect to 
the objects which were thus presented as pledges of 
regard ; and if Bayard, the " knight without fear 
and without reproach," obtained from the lady of his 
heart a pair of elegant bracelets and a silken purse — 


the favoured knight of a more recent age received 
from the hand of his mistress the less costly gift of 
a simple flower. The presents given in this manner 
by ladies to their favourite champions were soon 
converted into emprises, or devices, and were worn 
on those parts of the dress or armour which an ad- 
versary was obliged to touch when he challenged 
the possessor of the emprise to single combat. 

In France, during the middle ages, flowers were 
much employed as emblems of love and gallantry. 
At the banquet given in celebration of the marriage 
of Charles the Bold, Duke of Burgundy, with the 
English Princess Margaret, several ingenious auto- 
mata were introduced — among others was a large 
unicorn, bearing on its back a leopard, which held 
in one claw the standard of England, and in the 
other a daisy, the French name of which is Mar- 
guerite. The unicorn, having gone round all the 
tables, halted before the Duke, and one of the mai- 
tres iVhutel, taking the daisy from the leopard's 
claw, presented it, with a complimentary address, to 
the royal bridegroom. 

In Spain, gallantry was forced to take a different 
direction ; for there the fair sex were kept under 
such rigid restraint, that a lover scarcely ever had 


an opportunity of making a verbal declaration to his 
mistress. Recourse was therefore had to an expres- 
sive kind of pantomimic language, which was learned 
by children of both sexes at a very early age. By 
this method lovers were enabled to hold communi- 
cation with each other for years without ever inter- 
changing a syllable. In the reign of Charles II., 
however, the Spanish ladies were allowed a greater 
degree of freedom ; and the Guapos, or gallants of 
Madrid, who adopted the fashion of wearing flowers 
in their hats, used to assemble in the evening on 
the Prado, and to present nosegays to the ladies in 
their carriages. 

The practice of conversing by gestures and signs 
was introduced by the Spaniards into Brussels, 
where the Duke of Orleans and the French noble- 
men of his suite availed themselves of this silent 
language to pay court to the ladies at their win- 

The Italian and Sicilian females, who were not 
less closely guarded than the Spanish women, also 
practised a pantomimic language, and adopted the 
use of flowers in love affairs. In Genoa, it was no 
unusual thing for a lady to throw a nosegay openly 


to her lover, and this token was received by the 
grateful favourite with a low bow. 

Plants may in many respects be regarded as be- 
ings closely allied to man, and they frequently exer- 
cise an important influence over us. The following 
remarks on this subjectet suggested themselves to 
Matthisson, the German poet, while journeying 
along the Cosa to Domo d'Ossola. " The beautiful 
cyclamen, which blooms along both sides of the 
road, continually reminded me of the delightful 
summer day which I spent in company with Salis 
and his wife, at a shepherd's hut in the neighbour- 
hood of Malans, where for the lirst time I saw this 
flower growing wild. I have never since beheld the 
cyclamen without being reminded of the beloved 
friends with whom I first plucked and examined it, 
and of the smiling landscape with which we were 
surrounded. There are various other plants, the 
sight of which also revives in my mind recollections 
of dear and interesting persons, and which brings 
the scenes of early youth forcibly before me, as the 
strains of the Hans des Vaches, when heard in a 
foreign country, remind the Swiss peasant of his 
native mountains. 


"Numerous examples might be adduced to prove 
that, in the power of exciting past recollections, the 
sight of a flower has often a more magic effect than 
even the favourite melodies of our youth. I myself 
know a young lady who, though entirely free from 
nervous weakness, could never look at a carnation 
without bursting into tears, because she was pluck- 
ing a flower of that kind at the moment when she 
was informed of her mother's death. The sight of 
the periwinkle always produced pleasingly painful 
feelings in Rousseau's mind ; and Bougainville's 
South Sea Islander, on being taken to the Botanic 
Garden in Paris, knelt before an Otaheitean plant, 
and kissed it as fondly as he would have kissed the 
lips of a beloved mistress. It would be impossible 
to describe the many delightful ideas and recollec- 
tions for which, during my solitary journeys, I have 
been indebted to the chronicle of Flora." 

A flower-garden may be compared to a pano- 
rama of hieroglyphics, displaying not the miserable 
worldly wisdom of mortals, inscribed in dead cha- 
racters, but the maxims of immortal philosophy, 
exhibited in living forms with all their peculiar 
varieties. Fancy traces a symbolic resemblance 


between man and the forms and motions of all the 
natural objects in the creation ; and, to borrow 
Chateaubriand's bold metaphor, the whole universe 
may be considered as the imagination of the Deity 
rendered visible ; yet certainly this similarity is 
most particularly striking in the vegetable world. 
The most superficial observer cannot fail to per- 
ceive that plants present faithful emblems of the 
various stages of human life, and the most remarka- 
ble peculiarities in our physical formation, and in 
our moral relations to each other. 

In those southern regions, where every living 
being feels the influence of vital heat and the 
exciting oxygen which pervades the atmosphere 
— where the genial climate, with scarcely any 
change of seasons, liberally provides for the support 
of man — Nature presents her vegetable hierogly- 
phics in the most marked and permanent characters. 
The contemplation of the starry canopy of heaven 
is calculated to inspire every reflecting mind with 
the sublimest ideas of immortality. When the at- 
tractions of all transitory objects are veiled in the 
gloom of night — when, amidst the stillness of 
Nature, the voice of God resounds in the rustling 


of the trees and the murmuring of the swelling, 
billows — the soul seems to wing its way towards 
the realms of eternity, and the virtuous mind is 
impressed with a deeper consciousness of its moral 
dignity. This trait in the human mind is typified 
in the vegetation of the East, by a tree to which 
the Turks, Arabians, Persians, and Malays give 
various names, and which we distinguish by the 
appellation of the Sorrowful Tree, (Nyctanthes 
arbor tristis, L.) It resembles the cherry-tree in 
form ; but it is of much larger size. Its flowers, 
which resemble the orange blossom, are white, with 
a reddish tint at the bottom of the calyx, and their 
prefume is like that of the evening primrose. This 
tree possesses the peculiar property of blooming and 
emitting its delightful fragrance during the night. 
There are 

Plants that wake when others sleep ; 
Like timid jasmine buds that keep 
Their odour to themselves all day. 
But, when the sun-light dies away, 
Let the delicious secret out 
To every breeze that roams about. 

The first bud of the sorrowful Tree opens as 


soon as the first star appears in the heavens, 
and, as the shades of night advance, and the stars 
thickly stud the sky, the buds continue gradually 
blowing until the whole tree presents the appear- 
ance of one immense flower — the flower of a 
world, compared with which our earth would be but 
a football. On the approach of morning when the 
brilliancy of the stars gradually fades in the light of 
day, the Sorrowful Tree closes its flowers ; and, 
when the first beam of the rising sun appears, not 
a single blossom is visible. A sheet of flower-dust, 
as white as snow, covers the ground around the 
foot of the tree, which seems blighted and withered 
during the day, while, however, it is invisibly and 
actively preparing for its next nocturnal festival. 
If this tree is cut down close to the roots, a new 
plant shoots up and attains maturity in an almost 
incredibly short space of time : like the truly 
great man, who, though he may be for a while 
bowed down by the storms of fate, will soon recover 
and flourish in his wonted glory. In the vicinity of 
this singular tree, there usually grows another, 
which is probably a degenerate scion of the same 
species. In appearance it exactly resembles the 


Sorrowful Tree, though it is less beautiful. It 
blooms only in the day time, thus presenting an 
emblem of those persons who seem created only to 
enjoy the garish light of day, and who suffer the 
luminaries of night to diffuse their serener radiance 
unheeded and unseen. 

Though we dwell not on the luxuriant banks 
of the Tigris, where, in the spring, the whole 
country exhibits the appearance of a richly vari- 
egated and perfumed flower-bed : yet even in 
the less fertile regions of the North the gifts of Flora 
are sufficiently abundant and diversified to enable 
us to create from them a language for the expres- 
sion of those sentiments to which the tongue 
cannot always venture to give utterance. Every 
flower seems naturally to present some particular 
emblematic meaning ; and, in the combination 
of a garland or nosegay, it is no difficult matter to 
compose a riddle, the solution of which may afford 
an agreeable exercise to the fancy. 

If, for example, a lady should receive from her 
lover a bouquet consisting of roses, lilies, laurel, 
and forget-me-not; the meaning of the present 
might be thus interpreted : the flower of inno- 
cence, when kissed by the rose, blushes as thou 


wouldst blush at the approach of love ; the proud 
laurel denotes thy beauty's triumph ; and the 
tender forget-me-not is the emblem of eternal 

This idea of rendering flowers the vehicle of a 
lover's sentiments has been thus happily seized by 
one of our early English poets : 

Aske me why I send you here 

This firstling of the infant year ; 

Aske me \\ hy I send to you 

This Primrose all bepeaiTd with dew ; 

1 strait will whisper in your ears, 

The sweets of love are washt with teares. 

Aske me why this flow'r doth show 
So yellow, green and sickly too ; 
Aske me why the stalk is weak, 
And bending, yet it doth not break ; 
I must tell you, these discover 
What doubts and fears are in a Lover. 

The following lines from Drayton's Muses Ely- 
sium may afford some useful hints for the arrange- 
ment of a bouquet, with regard to the harmonious 
blending of the tints of the different flowers. A 
nymph is supposed to be speaking : 


Here damask roses, white and red, 

Out of my lap first take I, 
Which still shall run along the thread: 

My chiefest flower this make I. 

Amongst these roses in a row, 
Next place I pinks in plenty, 

These double pansies then for show, 
And will not this be dainty? 

The pretty pansy then I'll tye 
Like stones some chain inchasing; 

And next to them, their near ally, 
The purple violet, placing. 

The curious choice clove Julyflower, 
Whose kindhight the carnation, 

For sweetness of most sovereign power, 
Shall help my wreath to fashion ; 

Whose sundry colours of one kind, 
First from one root derived, 

Them in their several suits I'll bind : 
My garland so contrived. 

A course of cowslips then I'll stick, 
And here and there (though sparely) 

The pleasant primrose down I'll prick, 
Like pearls that will show rarely; 


Then with these marigolds I'll make 

My garland somewhat swelling, 
These honeysuckles then I'll take, 

Whose sweets shall help their smelling. 

The lily and the fleur-de-lis, 
For colour much contenting, 

For that I them do only prize, 
They are but poor in scenting ; 

The daffodil most dainty is, 
To match with these in meetness; 

The columbine compared to this, 
All much alike for sweetness. 

These in their natures only are 

Fit to emboss the border, 
Therefore I'll take especial care 

To place them in their order: 

Sweet-williams, campions, sops in-wine, 

One by another neatly : 
Thus have I made this wreath of mine, 

And finished it featly. 

The practice of divination by flowers is not al- 
together unconnected with the floral language which 
forms the principal subject of this little volume. It 


is customary in some countries to pluck off the leaves 
of the marigold or any flower of the aster kind, while 
certain words are repeated, in order to ascertain the 
character or inclination of the individual. Gbthe has 
touched upon this superstition in his tragedy of 
Faust, in which Margaret plucks off the leaves of a 
flower, at the same time alternately repeating the 
words : — " He loves me." — " He loves me not." On 
coming to the last leaf she joyfully exclaims — " He 
loves me !" and Faust says : " Let this flower pro- 
nounce the decree of heaven !" 

This circumstance has been chosen by Retsch for 
the subject of one of his exquisite sketches for the 
illustration of Faust, to an engraving of which Miss 
Landon wrote a little poem entitled " The Decision 
of the Flower," containing these lines : 

And with scarlet poppies around, like a bower, 

The maiden found her mystic flower; 

" Now, gentle flower, I pray thee tell 

If my lover loves me, and loves me well ; 

So may the fall of the morning dew 

Keep the sun from fading thy tender blue, 

Now I number the leaves for my lot — 

He loves not — he loves me— he loves rae not — 



He loves me— yes, thou last leaf, yes— 
I'll pluck thee not for the last sweet guess! 
He loves me !"_" Yes," a dear voice sighed, 
And her lover stands by Margaret's side. 

In some countries the following mode of divina- 
tion is resorted to. The lover, male or female, who 
wishes to ascertain the character of the beloved ob- 
ject, chooses or draws by lot one of the following 
flowers : 

1. Ranunculus. 

2. Wild Pink. 

3. Auricula. 

4. Blue Cornflower. 

5. Wild Orach. 

6. Daisy. 

7. Tulip. 

8. Jonquil. 

9. Orangeflower. 

10. Rose. 

11. Amaranth. 

12. Stock. 

13. Spanish Vetch, 

14. Asphodel. 

15. Tricolour. 

16. Tuberose. 

17. Jasmine. 

18. Heart's-ease. 

19. Lily. 

20. Fritillary. 

21. Snapdragon. 

22. Carnation. 

23. Marigold. 

24. Everlasting Flower. 

The disposition of the individual in question will 
be found in the subjoined list at the number corres- 



ponding with that of the flower, which has either 
been chosen or allotted by chance. 

1. Enterprising. 

2. Silly. 

3. Base. 

4. Loquacious. 

5. Lazy. 

6. Gentle. 

7. Ostentatious. 

8. Obstinate. 

9. Hasty. 

20. Submissive. 

11. Arbitrary. 

12. Avaricious. 

13. Passionate. 

14. Languishing. 

15. Selfish. 

16. Ambitious. 

17. Cheerful. 

18. Delicate. 

19. Sincere. 

20. Coquettish. 

21. Presumptuous. 

22. Capricious. 

23. Jealous. 

24. Constant. 

The following pages will explain the emblematic 
significations which have been attributed to different 
flowers, plants, shrubs, and trees ; and the various 
combinations which these meanings may suggest 
will, it is presumed, furnish a pleasing exercise for 
the ingenuity of our fair readers. 



Here Spring appears, with flowery chaplets bound, 


Fresh Spring, the herald of love's mighty king, 
In whose cote-armour richly are display'd 

All sorts of flowers the which on earth do spring, 
In goodly colours gloriously array'd. 


Now gentle gales, 
Fanning their odoriferous wings, dispense 
Native perfumes, and whisper whence they stole 
These balmy spoils. 


Who loves not Spring's voluptuous hours, 
The carnival of birds and flowers ? 





Though the Snowdrop cannot, perhaps, strictly 
speaking, be called one of the flowers of spring, still, 
as the herald of that season, we may be excused for 
placing it at the head of them. 

Fair-handed Spring unbosom's every grace, 
Throws out the snowdrop and the crocus first. 


As Flora's breath by some transforming power. 
Had changed an icicle into a flower, 
Its name and hue the scentless plant retains, 
And winter lingers in its icy chains. 


The snowdrop, Winter's timid child, 
Awakes to life, bedewed with tears, 

And flings around its fragrance mild; 

And, where no rival flow'rets bloom, 

Amidst the bare and chilling gloom, 
A beauteous gem appears. 

All weak and wan with head inclined, 

Its parent breast the drifted snow, 
It trembles, while the ruthless wind 
Bends its slim form ; the tempest lowers, 
Its emerald eye drops crystal showers 
On its cold bed below. 


Where'er I find thee, gentle flower, 
Thou still art sweet and dear to me ! 

For 1 have known the cheerless hour, 

Have seen the sunbeams cold and pale, 

Have felt the chilling wintry gale, 
And wept and shrunk, like thee ! 

Mary Robinson. 

This firstling of the year may not inaptly be con- 
sidered as an emblem of hope. Some have regarded 
it as a symbol of humility, of gratitude, and of virgin 

The north wind howls ; the naked branches of the 
trees are powdered with hoar frost ; the earth is 
covered by a white, uniform carpet ; the tuneful 
birds are silent ; the captive rivulet ceases to mur- 
mur. At this season, when all Nature appears dead, 
a delicate flower springs up amidst the snow, dis- 
playing to the astonished eye its ivory bells, embo- 
soming a small green spot, as if marked by the pencil 
of Hope. In expanding its blossoms on the snow, 
this delicate flower seems to smile at the rigours of 
winter, and to say : — " Take courage ; here I am to 
cheer you with the hope of milder weather !" 




The stalk of this shrub is covered with a dry bark, 
which gives to it the appearance of dead wood. Na- 
ture, to hide this deformity, has encirled each of its 
sprays with a garland of red flowers, wreathed round 
them and terminating in a small tuft of leaves, in the 
manner of the pine-apple. These flowers, which 
appear in the month of February, give out a pecu- 
liar and dangerous smell. 

This shrub, clothed in its showy garb, appears 
amidst the snow like an imprudent and coquettish 
female, who, though shivering with cold, wears her 
spring attire in the depth of winter. 




From the early bloom of this flower, it is called 
by Linneus, the father of the modern system of bo- 
tany, primula Veris — the firstling of Spring. The 
Auricula, Polyanthus, and Cowslip, belong to this 

The Primrose was anciently called Paralisos, the 
name of a beautiful youth, who died of grief for the 
loss of his betrothed Melicerta, and was metamor- 
phosed by his parents into this flower, which has 
since divided the favour of the poets with the Violet 
and the Rose. 

Beneath the sylvan canopy, the ground 
Glitters with flowery dyes ; the Primrose first, 
In mossy dell, return of Spring to greet. 


The Primrose pale is Nature's meek and modest child. 


The Primrose, tenant of the glade, 
Emblem of virtue in the shade. 



Shakspeare makes the Primrose a funeral flower 
for youth. 

With fairest flowers. 

Whilst summer lasts, and I live here, Fidele, 

I'll sweeten thy sad grave : thou shalt not lack 

The flower that's like thy face pale primrose. 





The Almond-tree is the first of the frees to obey 
the call of early spring. Nothing can be more grace- 
ful than this beautiful tree when it appears covered 
with blossoms, while the surrounding trees are still 
quite naked. It has been made the emblem of in- 
discretion, from flowering so early that frosts too 
often destroy the precious germs of its fruit, though, 
instead of injuring its flowers, they seem to confer 
on the latter additional beauty. 

According to Moore, the Almond blossom is the 
emblem of hope — 

The hope, in dreams of a happier hour, 

That alights on Misery's brow, 
Springs out of the silvery almond-flower. 

That blooms on a leafless bough. 

In ancient times, the abundance of blossom on 
this tree was considered as the promise of a fruitful 



Mark well the flowering almond in the wood ; 
If odorous blooms the bearing branches load, 
The glebe will answer to the sylvan reign, 
Great heats will follow, and large crops of grain. 
But if a wood of leaves o'ershade the tree, 
Such and so barren will the harvest be, 
In vain the hind shall vex the threshing floor, 
For empty straw and chaff will be thy store. 

Dryden's Virgil. 

Fable confers an affecting origin on this tree. It 
relates that Demophoon, son of Theseus and Phaedra, 
in returning from the siege of Troy, was thrown by 
a storm on the shores of Thrace, where then reigned 
the beautiful Phyllis. The young queen graciously 
received the prince, fell in love with him, and be- 
came his wife. When recalled to Athens by his 
father's death, Demophoon promised to return in a 
month, and fixed the day. The affectionate Phyllis 
counted the hours of his absence, and at last the 
appointed day arrived. Nine times she repaired to 
the shore ; but, losing all hope of his return, she 
dropped down dead with grief, and was turned into 
an Almond-tree. Three months afterwards, Demo- 
phoon returned. Overwhelmed with sorrow, he of- 
fered a sacrifice at the sea-side, to appease the manes 
of his bride. She seemed to sympathise with his 


repentance : for the Almond-tree, into which she had 
been transformed, instantly put forth its flowers, 
and proved by this last effort that true love, « strong 
as death," is incapable of change. 




The Weeping Willow is a native of the East, 
where it was not only planted near the water, but 
also near the graves of the dead, over which its 
branches drooped as in token of mourning and afflic- 
tion, producing an appropriate and picturesque effect. 
It is called by Linneus the Willow of Babylon 
(Salix Babylonica,) in allusion to that affecting 
passage in the 137th Psalm, where the captive chil- 
dren of Israel are represented as hanging their harps 
upon the willows, and sitting down beside the waters 
of Babylon to weep the separation from their be- 
loved country. 

Silent their harps— each cord unstrung, 
On pendent willow-branches hung. 


On the willow thy harp is suspended — 
O Salem ! its sound should be free, 

And the hour when thy glories were ended 
But left me that token of thee ; 

And ne'er shall its soft notes be blended 
With the voice of the spoiler by me. 


Forsaken lovers are represented by our earlier 
poets as wearing wreaths of Willow. 

In love, the sad, forsaken wight 
The Willow-garland weareth. 


I offered him my company to a Willow-tree, to make him 
a garland, as being forsaken. 


In such a night. 
Stood Dido, with a Willow in her hand, 
Upon the wild sea-banks, and waved her love 
To come again to Carthage. 


I'll wear the Willow garland for his sake. 


The Arabs have a particular tradition relative to 
the origin of the Weeping Willow. This tradition 
is founded on the story of Bathsheba, and cor- 
responds with the account given in the Old Testa- 
ment of the manner in which she became the wife 
of David and the mother of Solomon. It then pro- 
ceeds thus : — One morning, the king was seated 
as usual at his harp, composing psalms, when he 


perceived to his astonishment two strangers seated 
opposite to him on the divan. As strict orders 
were issued that no person whatever should be 
admitted during the first four hours of the day, 
David wondered greatly how the strangers had 
gained access to his closet. They rose, and 
begged pardon for having entered unannounced, 
because they had an urgent complaint to lay 
before him. David quitted the harp, and placed 
himself on his judgment seat. " This man," began 
one of them, " has ninety-nine sheep, which plenti- 
fully supply all his wants ; while I, poor wretch, 
had but one that was my joy and comfort, and that 
one he has forcibly taken from me." At the men- 
tion of the ninety-nine sheep, David could not help 
thinking of the flock of his harem. He recognized 
in the strangers two angels of the Lord, and was 
sensible of the heinousness of his offence. Forth- 
with [he threw himself upon the floor, and shed 
tears of bitter repentance. There he lay for forty days 
and forty nights upon his face, weeping and trem- 
bling before the judgment of the Lord. As many 
tears of repentance as the whole human race have 
shed, and will shed on account of their sins, from 
the time of David till the judgment day, so many 


did David weep in those forty days, all the while 
moaning forth psalms of penitence. The tears 
from his eyes formed two streams, which ran from 
the closet into the ante-room, and thence into the 
garden. Where they sank into the ground, there 
sprang up two trees, the Weeping Willow and the 
Frankincense Tree. The first weeps and mourns ; 
and the second is incessantly shedding big tears, in 
memory of the sincere repentance of David. 




Iosr, the Greek name of this flower, is traced by 
some etymologists to la, the daughter of Midas, who 
was betrothed to Atys, and changed by Diana into 
a Violet to hide her from Apollo. The beautiful 
modest flower still retains the bashful timidity of the 
nymph, partially concealing itself amidst foliage 
from the garish gaze of the sun. Hence it has been 
ingeniously given as a device to an amiable and 
witty lady of a timid and reserved disposition, sur- 
rounded with the motto — II faut me chercher — I 
must be sought after. 

A woman's love, deep in the heart. 

Is like the Violet flower, 
That lifts its modest head apart 

In some sequestered bower. 


Unhappy fate of doubtful maid! 

Her tears ma} - fall, her bosom swell ; 
But even so the desert shade 

She never must her secret tell. 

W. Smith. 


The White Violet is also made the emblem of 
innocence ; and, from the following lines, by a poet 
of the sixteenth century, it appears to have been con- 
sidered as a symbol of constancy : 

Violet is for faithfulness, 

Which in me shall abide ; 
Hoping likewise that from your heart 

You will not let it slide. 

The poetry, the romance, and the scenery, of every 
country are embroidered with Violets. 

Violets dim, 
But sweeter than the lids of Juno's eyes, 
Or Cytherea's breath. 


From several other passages in Shakspeare's 
works, it is evident that the Violet was a favourite 
with our grand dramatist. We doubt if the poetry 
of any language can produce lines more exquisitely 
beautiful than these, in which he compares the soft 
strains of plaintive music to the perfume of Violets : — 

That strain again !— it had a dying fall!— 
Oh ! it came o'er my ear like the sweet south, 
That breathes upon a bank of Violets, 
Stealing and giving odour. 

Twelfth Mgkt. 


It has a scent, as though Love for its dower 
Had on it all his odorous arrows tost ; 

For, though the rose has more perfuming power, 
The Violet (haply 'cause 'tis almost lost, 

And takes us so much trouble to discover) 
Stands first with most, but always with a lover. 

Barry CornwaJU 

At the Floral Games instituted at Toulouse in the 
early part of the fourteen century, in the time of the 
Troubadours, the prize awarded to the author of 
the best poetical composition consisted of a golden 
Violet, to which several other prizes were afterwards 
added by Clemence Isaure. This festival, inter- 
rupted by the Revolution was revived in 1806, 
and is still held annually in the town-house of 

DAISY. 51 



Fabulous history informs us that the Daisy- 
owed its origin to Belides, one of the nymphs called 
Dryads, who were supposed to preside over meadows 
and pastures. While dancing on the turf with 
Ephigeus, whose suit she encouraged, she attracted 
the admiration of Vertumnus, the deity who presided 
over orchards ; and to escape from him, she was 
transformed into the humble flower, the Latin name 
of which is Bellis. The ancient English name of 
this flower was Day's Eye, in which way it is writ- 
ten by Ben ' Jonson ; and Chaucer calls it the " ee 
of the daie." No doubt it received this designation 
from its habit of closing its petals at night, which it 
also does in rainy weather. 

The Daisy has always been a favourite with 
poets. Shakspeare speaks of it as the flower 

Whose white investments figure innocence. 


Star of the mead ! — sweet daughter of the day, 
Whose opeaiqg flower invites the morning ray, 
From thy moist cheek and bosom's chilly fold 
To kiss the tears of Eve, the dew-drops cold, 
Sweet Daisy ! 


When, smitten by the morning ray, 
I see thee rise, alert and gay, 
Then, cheerful flower ! my spirits play 
With kindred gladness : 

And when, at dark, by dews opprest, 

Thou sink'st, the image of thy rest 

Hath often eased my pensive breast 

Of careful sadness. 


O'er waste and woodland, rock and plain, 
Its humble buds unheeded rise ; 

The rose has but a summer reign — 
The Daisy never dies. 


Not worlds on worlds in Phalanx deep 
Need we to prove a God is here ; 

The Daisy, fresh from Winter's sleep, 
Tells of his hand in lines as clear. 

For who but He who arched the skies, 
And pours the day-spring's living flood, 

Wondrous alike in all he tries, 
Could raise the Daisy's purple bud ! 

DAISY. 53 

Mould its green cup, its wiry stem, 

Its fringed border nicely spin, 
And cut the gold-embossed gem 

That, set in silver, gleams within ; 

And fling it unrestrained and free, 

O'er hill and dale, and desert sod, 
That Man, where'er he walks, may see 

In every step the stamp of God ! 

Mason Good. 

Malvina bending over the tomb of Fingal, wept 
for the valiant Oscar, and a son of Oscar's who 
never beheld the light of day. 

The maids of Morven, to soothe her grief, assem- 
bled around her, and sang the death of the hero and 
of the new-born infant. 

The hero is fallen, said they, he is fallen ! The 
crash of his arms hath rung over the plain. He is 
beyond the reach of disease, which enfeebles the 
soul — of old age, which dishonours the brave. He 
has fallen, and the crash of his arms hath rung over 
the plain. In the palace of clouds, where dwell 
his ancestors, he now quaffs with them the cup of 
immortality. Dry the tears of thy grief, daughter 
of Toscar ! The hero is fallen ! — he is fallen ! — and 
the crash of his arms hath rung over the plain ! 


Then, in a softer tone, they said to her : — The 
child which hath not seen the light hath not known 
the sorrows of life : his young spirit, borne aloft on 
glittering wings, soars to the abodes of everlasting 
day. The souls of infants who, like thine, have 
burst without pain the bonds of life, reclining on 
golden clouds, appear and open to him the myster- 
ious portal of the manufactory of flowers. There 
these innocents are continually employed in enclos- 
ing the flowers that the next spring shall bring 
forth in imperceptible germs : these germs they 
scatter every morning over the earth with the tears 
of the dawn. Millions of delicate hands enwrap the 
rose in its bud, the grain of corn in its husk, the 
mighty oak in a single acorn, a whole forest in an 
imperceptible seed. 

We have seen him, Malvina ! — we have seen, 
the infant whom thou mournest, borne on a light 
mist : he approached, and poured upon our fields 
a fresh harvest of flowers. Behold, Malvina ! — 
among these flowers there is one with golden disk, 
encircled with rays of silver, tipped with a delicate 
tint of crimson. Waving amid the grass in a gentle 
beeeze, it looks like a little child playing in a green 
meadow. Dry thy tears, Malvina ! — the hero 

DAISY. 55 

died covered with his arms ; and the flower of 
thy bosom has given a new flower to the hills of 

And the grief of Malvina was soothed by these 
songs, and she repeated the song of the new-born. 

Since that day the daughters of Morven have 
consecrated the Daisy to infancy. It is, they 
say, the flower of innocence, the flower of the new- 




The Heart' s-ease, Viola tricolor, or Pansy, from 
the French Pensee, is a beautiful variety of the 
Violet, differing from it in the diversity of its colours, 
the petals being chiefly yellow variegated with black 
and purple. In fragrance, however, it is far inferior 
to the Violet. One species of the Pansy is entirely 

And there are pansies, that's for thoughts. 


And thou, so rich in gentle names, appealing 
To hearts that own our nature's common lot ; 

Thou, styled by sportive Fancy's better feeling 
A Thought, the Heart's Ease, and Forget Me Not. 


The fanciful origin of the colour of this flower is 
thus described by our great bard. 

I saw, 
Flying between the cold moon and the earth, 
Cupid all arm'd ; a certain aim he took 
At a fair vestal throned in the West. 


And loosed his love-shaft smartly from his bow, 

As it should pierce a hundred thousand hearts. 

But I might see young Cupid's fiery shaft 

Quench'd in the chaste beams of the wat'ry moon. 

And the imperial vot'ress passed on. 

In maiden meditation, fancy-free. 

Yet marked I where the bolt of Cupid fell: 

It fell upon a little western flower, 

Before milk-white, now purple with love's wound, 

And maidens call it Love in Idleness. 

The juice of it, on sleeping eyelids laid. 

Will make or man or woman madly doat 

Upon the next live creature that it sees. 


In the year 1815, this flower furnished occasion 
for a tragi-comic occurrence in France. A school- 
master in a provincial town had proposed as a theme 
for his pupils a description of the Viola Tricolor. 
and given them as a motto the following passage 
from a Latin poem by Father Rapin, entitled " The 
Gardens :" 

Flosque Jovis varius, folii tricoloris, et ipsi 
Par viols. 

The mayor of the town was informed of the cir- 
cumstance ; and, taking it into his head that the 
object of the schoolmaster was to excite insurrection 
against the government of the lately-restcred Louis 


XVIII., this sage functionary ordered the poor man 
to be apprehened. The mayor construed the verses 
above quoted in the following manner : — Flos Jovis, 
the flower of Jupiter, was of course the flower of 
Napoleon ; folii tricoloris denoted as evidently the 
three-coloured cockade ; et ipsipar violas, was a mani- 
fest allusion to la pere la violette, as Bonaparte was 
then called, because his partisans had adopted this 
flower as a sign of their attachment, and carried it 
in their button-holes or in their bosoms. Astonished 
and confounded as the poor schoolmaster at first was 
at his arrest, he could not forbear smiling at this 
comic interpretation of the above passage of his 
worship, the mayor. 

/>,//,>.' ///>/tt///', ///■/<////,/// t>i mkyorlunt 'Jytts //>/,//,,■/> 




The Wallflower derives its name from the cir- 
cumstance of its growing upon old walls, and being 
seen on the casements or battlements of ancient 
castles, among the ruins of abbeys, and on turrets, 
and cottages. Hence the minstrels and troubadours 
were accustomed to wear a bouquet of Wallflowers, 
as the emblem of an affection which is proof against 
time and misfortune. 

Modern poets have not been backward to acknow- 
ledge the merits of this beautiful and fragrant 

To me it speaks of loveliness, 

That passes not with youth, 
Of beauty which decay can bless, 

Of constancy and truth. 


But, in adversity's dark hour, 

When glory is gone by, 
It then exerts its gentle power 

The scene to beautify. 


An emblem true thou art 

Of love's enduring lustre, given 
To cheer a lonely heart. 


And our friend Moir (Delta of Blackwood's 
Magazine) pays this feeling tribute to the Wall- 

The Wallflower, the Wallflower ! 

How beautiful it blooms! 
It gleams above the ruined tower, 

Like sunlight over tombs ; 
It sheds a halo of repose 

Around the wrecks of time ; 
To beauty give the flaunting rose— 

The Wallflower is sublime. 

Flower of the solitary place! 

Gray Ruin's golden crown, 
That lendest melancholy grace 

To haunts of old Renown : 
Thou mantlest o'er the battlement, 

By strife or storm decay'd ; 
And fillest up each envious rent 

Time's canker tooth hath made. 


Whither hath fled the choral band 

That fill'd the abbey's nave ? 
Yon dark sepulchral yew-trees stand 

O'er many a level grave. 
In the belfry's crevices, the dove 

Her young brood nurseth well, 
Whilst thou, lone flower, dost shed above 

A sweet decaying smell. 

In the season of the tulip-cup, 

When blossoms clothe the trees-, 
How sweet to throw the lattice up, 

And scent thee on the breeze ! 
The butterfly is then abroad, 

The bee is on the wing, 
And on the hawthorn by the road 

The linnets sit and sing. 

Sweet Wallflower, sweet Wallflower ! 

Thou conjurest up to me 
Full many a soft and sunny hour 

Of boyhood's thoughtless glee ; 
When joy from out the daisies grew 

In woodland pastures green, 
And summer skies were far more blue 

Than since they e'er have been. 

Now Autumn's pensive voice is heard 

Amid the yellow bowers : 
The robin is the regal bird, 

And thou the queen of flowers! 


He sings on the laburnum trees, 

Amid the twilight dim, 
And Araby ne'er gave the breeze 

Such scents as thou to him. 

Rich is the pink, the lily gay, 

The rose is summer's guest : 
Bland are thy charms when these decay- 

Of flowers first, last, and best ! 
There may be gaudier in the bower, 

And statelier on the tree- 
But Wallflower, loved Wallflower, 

Thou art the flower for me ! 




The ancients attributed the origin of this flower 
to the metamorphosis of a beautiful youth named 
Narcissus, who, having slighted the love of the 
nymph Echo, became enamoured of his own image, 
which he beheld in a fountain, and pined to death 
in consequence. 

Here young Narcissus o'er the fountain stood, 
And viewed his image in the crystal flood ; 
The crystal flood reflects his lovely charms, 
And the pleased image strives to meet his arms. 
No nymph in his inexperienced breast subdued, 
Echo in vain the flying boy pursued. 
Himself alone the foolish youth admires, 
And with fond look the smiling shade desires. 
O'er the smooth lake with fruitless tears he grieves ; 
His spreading fingers shoot in verdant leaves : 
Through his pale veins green sap now gently flows, 
And in a short-lived flower his beauty blows. 
Let vain Narcissus warn each female breast 
That beauty's but a transient good at best; 
Like flowers, it withers with th' advancing year, 
And age, like winter, robs the blooming fair. 



There are several species of the Narcissus. 
That called the Poetic is the largest of the white 
kinds, and may he distinguished from all others by 
the crimson border of the very shallow and almost 
flat cup of the nectary. The double variety is the 
most frequent in gardens. The narrow-leafed crim- 
son-edged Narcissus is the only one that resembles 
the Poetic, but it is not much more than half as 
large, with narrower leaves, a flatter form, and the 
edge of the nectary more prominent. It flowers 
earlier than the other. 

The yellow Narcissus is better known by the 
name of Daffodil. By early writers this flower was 
considered as a species of lily. It has even been 
conjectured that the name is a corruption of Dis's 
Lily, as it is supposed to be the flower dropped from 
the chariot of Dis or Pluto, in his flight with Pro- 

Shakspeare, in his Winter's Tale, alludes to his 
story, as well as to the early season in which the 
Daffodil flowers : 

O Proserpina, 
For the flowers now that, frighted, thou lett'st fall 
From Dis's wagon : Daffodils 
That come before the swallow dares, and take 
The winds of March with beauty. 


Drayton in his Pastorals makes the Daffodil the 
same flower with the Lily : 

See that there be store of lilies, 
(Called by shepherds Daffodillies.) 

The Narcissus major, the largest of this family 
of flowers, a native of Spain, is common in our 
gardens, and rarely seen singly. Its magnificent 
gold-coloured flowers are supported by a stalk nearly 
two feet high. 

A modern poet has taken the Narcissus for an 
emblem of the pains of unrequitted love. Thus, too, 
the ancients, on account of its narcotic properties, 
regarded it as the flower of deceit, which, as Homer 
assures us, delights heaven and earth by its odour and 
external beauty, but, at the same time, produces 
stupor and even death. It was therefore consecrated 
to the Eumenides, Ceres, and Proserpine, on 
which account Sophocles calls it the garland of 
the great goddesses ; and Pluto, by the advice of 
Venus, employed it to entice Proserpine to the 
lower world. 

In the East, the Daffodil is a particular favourite. 
The Persians call it, by way of eminence, Zerrin, 


which signifies golden ; and by the Turks it is 
denominated Zerrin Kadeck, golden bowl. 

One of our older poets moralizes upon this flower 
in the following beautiful lines : — 

Fair Daffodils, we weep to see 
You haste away so soon ; 
As yet the early rising sun 
Has not attained his noon : 
Stay, stay, 
Until the hastening day 

Has run 
But to the even-song, 
And, having pray'd together, we 
Will go with you along. 

We have short time to stay as ye, 

We have as fleet a spring, 
As quick a growth to meet decay 

As you or anything : 
We die 

As your hours do, and dry 

Like to the summer's rain, 
Or as the pearls of morning's dew, 

Ne'er to be found again. 



The Hawthorn, or white Thorn, was among the 
Greeks a symbol of the conjugal union ; its blos- 
somed boughs were carried about at their wedding 
festivities, and the new-married couple were even 
lighted to the bridal chamber with torches of its 

Among the Turks a branch of the Hawthorn ex- 
presses the wish of a lover to receive a kiss from the 
object of his affection. 

In England, where the hedges, principally formed 
of Hawthorn, give such beauty and diversity to our 
landscapes, and where the air is perfumed during 
the season of flowering by the aromatic fragrance of 
its blossom, this shrub held a distinguished place 
among the May-day sports of our ancestors. From 
its flowering in that month, it received the name of 
May, by which it is still more frequently called than 
by its proper appellation. 

Stow tells us that, on May-day, in the morning, 


" every man, except impediment, would walk into 
the sweet meadows, and green woods, there to re- 
joice their spirits with the beauty and savour of 
sweet flowers, and with the harmony of birds praising 
God in their kind." People of all ranks joined in 
this recreation. King Henry VIIT. rode a-maying 
from Greenwich to Shooter's Hill, with his queen 
Katherine, accompanied by many lords and ladies. 

In the country, the juvenile part of both sexes 
were accustomed to rise soon after mid-night, and 
walk to some neighbouring wood accompanied 
with music and the blowing of horns ; there they 
would break branches from the trees and adorn 
them with nosegays and crowns of flowers. This 
done, they returned homeward about sunrise with 
their booty, and decorated their doors and windows 
with the flowery spoil. The after-part of the day 
was chiefly spent in dancing round a tall pole, 
called a May-pole : which, being placed in a con- 
venient part of the village, stood there, conse- 
crated as it were to the goddess of flowers, with- 
out suffering the least violation during the whole 

Herrick, in his beautiful poem of " Corinna's 
going a-maying," has also given us some idea 


of the manner in which this day was kept in his 

Come, my Corinna, come ; and, coming, mark 
How each field turns a street, each street a park, 

Made green and trimmed with trees ; see how 

Devotion gives each house a bough, 

Or branch ; each porch, each door, ere this, 

An ark, a tabernacle is, 
Made up of white-thorne, neatly interwove, 
As if here were'those cooler shades of love, 

Can such delights be in the street 

And open fields, and we not see't? 

Come, we'll abroad, and let's obey 

The proclamations made for May, 
And sin no more, as we have done, by staying; 
But, my Corinna, come ; let's go a-Maying. 

There's not a budding boy or girl, this day. 
But is got up and gone to bring in May: 

A deal of youth, ere this, is come 

Back, and with white-thornc laden home ; 

Some have despatched their cakes and cream 

Before that we have left to dream; 
And some have wept and wooed and plighted troth, 
And chose their priest ere we can cast off sloth, 

Many a green gown has been given, 

Many a kiss, hoth odd and even; 

Many a glance too has been sent 

From out the eye, love's firmament; 
Many a jest told of the Key's betraying 
This night and locks picked ; yet we're not a-Maying. 


Come, let us go while we are in our prime, 
And take the harmless folly of the time. 

Shakspeare notices with what eagerness the plea- 
sures of May-day morning were pursued in his 
time : — 

'Tis as much impossible, 
Unless we swept them from the door with cannons, 
To scatter 'em as 'tis to make 'em sleep 
On May -day morning. 

The May-day diversions and May-poles were 
not confined to the country. In London there were 
anciently several May-poles, the last of which, near 
Somerset House, in the Strand, was not taken down 
till the year 1717. 

In the scarlet berries of the Hawthorn, which are 
called haws, Providence has furnished an abundant 
supply of food for the small birds during winter : 
and it is a current notion that " store of haws portend 
cold winters." So says Lord Bacon, and no doubt 
experience might often be found to confirm the 

A beautiful variety of this tree, with double red 
blossom of extraordinary fragrance, is cultivated in 
our gardens. 

TULIP. 71 



Its the East the Tulip is employed as the emblem 
by which a lover makes a declaration of love, 
presenting the idea that, like that flower, he has 
a face all on fire and a heart reduced to a coal — 

Whose leaves, with their ruby glow, 

Hide the heart that lies burnins and black below. 

On account of the elegance of its form, the beauty 
of its colours, but its wast of fragrance and other 
useful qualities, this flower has been considered 
as an appropriate symbol of a female who possesses 
no other recommendation than personal beauty. 

It is supposed to have been brought from Persia 
to the Levant, and it was introduded into western 
Europe about the middle of the sixteenth century, 
by Busbeck, ambassador from the Emperor of Ger- 
many to the Porte ; who, to his astonishment, found 
Tulips on the road between Adrianople and Con- 


stantinople, blooming, in the middle of winter, in- 
termingled with the hyacinth and the narcissus, 
and could not sufficiently admire their beauty. 
The name given to it by Europeans is supposed to 
originate, in a corruption of the Persian word dul- 
bend, the muslin head-covering adopted by the 
Mahometan nations, which we have transformed 
ioto turban. In a Persian of rank this article of 
dress is not unlike the swelling form of the Tulip. 
Moore, in his " Veiled Prophet," alludes to this 
resemblance : — 

What triumph crowds the rich Divan to day, 
With turban'd heads of every hue and race, 
Bowing before that veil'd and awful face, 
Like tulip-beds of different shape and dyes, 
Bending beneath the invisible west wind's sighs! 

On their first introduction into Europe, Tulips 
became especial favourites of the cultivators of 
flowers. From Vienna they soon spread in Italy, 
and were sent in 1600 to England. Eleven years 
later they were first seen in France, in the garden 
of the learned Pieresc, at Aix, in Provence. In 
Holland, about the middle of the seventh century, a 
real mania for possessing rare sorts seized all classes 

TULIP. 73 

of persons. It would be almost impossible to credit 
the extraordinary accounts of the high prices given 
in that country for Tulips, did we not know. that 
it was a rage for gambling speculations, rather 
than a fondness for flowers, which occasioned these 
excesses. For a single Tulip, to which the Dutch 
florists had given the fine name of Semper Augustus 
were given four thousand six hundred florins (about 
£400), a beautiful new carriage, a pair of horses, 
and harness : another of the same kind sold for 
thirteen thousand florins ; and engagements to the 
amount of £5000 were made during the height of 
this mania for a single root of a particular sort. A 
person who possessed a Tulip of a very fine variety, 
hearing that there was another of the same kind at 
Haerlem, repaired to that city, and, having purchased 
it at an enormous price, placed it on a stone and 
crushed it to a mummy with his foot, exclaiming 
with exultation, " Now my tulip is unique !" We 
are also told that another, who possessed a yearly 
income of sixty thousand florins, reduced himself to 
beggary in the short space of four months, by pur- 
chasing these flowers. From this spirit of floral 
gambling the city of liaerlam is said to have derived 


not less than ten millions sterling in the space of 
three years ! 

It is related that, during the prevalence of this 
mania, a sailor, having brought some goods to a 
merchant who cultivated Tulips on speculation, had 
a herring given to him for his breakfast, with which 
he walked away. As he passed through the garden, 
he saw some roots lying there, and, mistaking them 
for onions, he picked them up and ate them with his 
herring. At this moment the merchant, coming 
forward and discovering what had happened, ex- 
claimed in despair, " Inconsiderate man, thou hast 
ruined me with thy breakfast ! I could have regaled 
a king with it." 

From the extraordinary favour thus shown to 
the Tulip, the species were soon multiplied to such 
a degree, that in 1740 the Baden-Durlach Garden at 
Carslrube contained not fewer than two thousand 
one hundred and fifty-nine sorts ; and the garden of 
Count Pappenheim boasted at one time of five 
thousand varieties. 

The estimation in which the Turks still hold 
Tulips is little inferior to that which they formerly 
enjoyed in Holland. They are never tired of ad- 
miring its elegant stem, the beautiful vase which 

TULIP. 75 

crowns it, with the streaks of gold, silver, purple, 
red, and the innumerable tints which revel, unite, 
and part again, on the surface of those rich petals. 

And sure more lovely to behold 
Might nothing meet the wistful eye, 

Than crimson fading into gold 
In streaks of fairest symmetry. 


The bulb or root of the Tulip resembles in every 
respect the bud of other plants, except in being 
produced under ground, and includes the leaves 
and flowers in miniature, which are to be expanded 
in the ensuing spring. By the careful dissection of 
a Tulip-root, and cautiously cutting through its 
concentric coats, lengthwise from top to bottom, and 
taking them off successively, the whole flower of the 
next summer with all its parts may be discovered by 
the naked eye. A popular poet has alluded to this 
circumstance in these lines, written " On planting a 

Here lies a bulb the child of earth, 

Buried alive beneath the clod, 
Ere long to spring, by second birth, 

A new and nobler work of God. 


'Tis said that microscopic power 
Might through his swaddling folds descry 

The infant image of the flower, 
Too exquisite to meet the eye. 

This vernal suns and rain will swell, 

Till from its dark abode it peep, 
Like Venus rising from her shell, 

Amnlst the spring-tide of the deep. 

Two shapely leaves will first unfold ; 

Then, on a smooth, elastic stem, 
The verdant bud shall turn to gold, 

And open in a diadem. 

Not one of Flora's brilliant race 
A form more perfect can display; 

Art could not feign more simple grace, 
Nor Nature lake a line away. 

Vet, rich as morn, of many a hue, 

When flushing clouds through darkness strike, 
The Tulip's petals shine in dew 

All beautiful but none alike. 




It is more than two centuries since the Horse- 
chestnut has been an inhabitant of our climate ; and 
nevertheless it is not yet observed to mingle its 
superb head with the crowd of trees indigenous to 
our forests. Its delight is to embellish parks, to 
adorn superb mansions, and to throw its broad shadow 
over the palaces of kings. 

One showery day in the commencement of spring 
suffices to invest this beautiful tree with all the 
richness of its verdure. When it grows by itself, 
nothing can be compared with the mingled magnifi- 
cence and elegance of its pyramidal form, the beauty 
of its foliage, and the richness of its flowers, which 
give it the appearance of an immense chandelier 
covered with innumerable girandoles. Ever attached 
to pomp and profusion, it covers with flowers the 
green turf which it protects with its shadow, and 
yields to pleasure its most delicious seclusion. But 


to the poor it only yields a scanty fuel and a bitter 

Naturalists and physicians especially have gra- 
tuitously conferred on this native of India a thousand 
good qualities which it does not possess. This 
beautiful tree, like the rich on whom it lavishes 
its shade,' obtains 'flatterers ; and thus, like them, 
does some good in spite of itself; while it astonishes 
the vulgar by a display of useless profusion. 

By some it has been regarded as an emblem of 
modesty and chastity. 

LILAC. 79 



The Lilac has been consecrated to the first emo- 
tions of love ; because nothing possesses a greater 
charm than the delight afforded by its appearance 
on the return of spring. Indeed the freshness of 
its verdure, the flexibility of its branches, the pro- 
fusion of its flowers, their short and transitory 
beauty, their soft and variegated hues — all recal 
those celestial emotions, which embellish beauty and 
lend to youth its " grace divine." 

Never was Albano able to mingle on that pallet, 
which he derived from the hand of love itself, colours 
sufficiently fresh and flowing to represent the velvet 
softness and delicacy of the tints which embellish 
the brow of early youth. Van Spaendone himself 
threw down his pencil on viewing a group of Lilacs. 


Nature seems to have delighted in making a finished 
production of each of its delicate clusters, massive 
in itself, and yet astonishing by its variety and 
beauty. The gradation of its tints, from the first 
purplish blood to the blanching flower, is the smallest 
fascination of its charming blossoms, round which 
the rainbow seems to revel and to dissolve into a 
hundred shades and colours, which, all comming- 
ling in the general tone and hue, produce a happy 
harmony that might well baffle the painter and con- 
found the observer. 

The lilac, various in array, now white, 
Now sanguine, and her beauteous head now set 
With purple spikes pyramidal, as if, 
Which hues she most approved, she chofe thein all. 


What immense pains does Nature appear to have 
taken to form this fragrant shurb, which merely 
seems to exist in order to gratify the senses ! what 
a union of perfume, grace, and delicacy ! what 
variety in details ! what harmony in the assemblage ! 
Doubtless it was destined in the decrees of Provi- 
dence to become the future bond of union between 

LILAC. 81 

Europe and Asia. The Lilac, which the traveller 
Busbeck brought, in the sixteenth century, to Europe 
from Persia, now grows on the mountains of Swit- 
zerland and in the forests of Germany. 




A celebrated French moralist has observed that if 
women were naturally what they become by artificial 
means, if they were to lose in a moment all the 
freshness of their complexion, and their faces were 
to be as flaring and as leaden as they make them 
with rouge and fard, they would go distracted. 

Incontestable as this truth appears, it is equally 
true that from north to south and from east to west, 
among savage nations and civilized nations, a fond- 
ness for using artificial means of improving the com- 
plexion universally prevails. The wandering Arab, 
the sedentary Turk, the Persian beauty, the small- 
footed Chinese, the phlegmatic Russian, the indolent 
Creole, and the light and vivacious French woman, 
all desire to please, and all resort to some kind of 


This taste prevails alike in the harem and in the 
desert. Duperron relates that a young savage, wish- 
ing to attract his notice, took by stealth a bit of 
charcoal, which she reduced to powder in a corner, 
rubbed her cheeks with it, and then came back with 
a look of triumph, as if this application had rendered 
her beauty irresistible. 

Castellan, in his Letters on Greece, thus describes 
a Greek princess, whose portrait he painted at Con- 
stantinople. " She was not," he says, " the ideal 
beauty I had pictured to myself. Her dark, pro- 
minent eyes were as bright as diamonds, but her 
blackened eyelashes spoiled their expression. Her 
eyebrows, joined by a line of paint, gave a kind of 
harshness to her look. Her small mouth and deep- 
coloured lips might be embellished with smiles, but 
I never had the pleasure to see them. Iler cheeks 
were covered with a very dark rouge, and her face 
was disfigured by crescent-shaped patches. Add to 
this the lifelessness of her demeanour and the freezing 
gravity of her physiognomy, and you would suppose 
that I had been depicting an Italian Madonna." 

The Bugloss has been made the emblem of false- 
hood, because its root is employed in the composi- 
tion of various kinds of rouge ; and that of which it 


constitutes the basis is perhaps the oldest and the 
least dangerous of all. Nay, it even possesses some 
advantages : it lasts several days without rubbing 
off"; water refreshes it like the natural colours ; and 
it is not hurtful to the skin, which it is used to em- 
bellish. Still, nothing can imitate the tint of that 
native modesty which flushes the cheek of innocence, 
and which art destroys beyond repair. Would you 
wish to please for a long time, for ever, banish false- 
hood from your hearts, your lips, and your aspect, 
and be assured that truth alone is deserving of love. 
The good taste displayed by the British ladies of 
the present day in discarding the barbarous practice 
of disfiguring the face by a composition mask, or an 
unnatural stain, must be acknowledged by every one 
who can recollect the fashions of the last thirty 




The Lily of the Valley delights in shady glens 
and the banks of murmuring brooks, where its exqui- 
sitely beautiful flower is modestly concealed amidst 
the broad, bright green leaves which surround its 
delicate and graceful bells. In floral language it is 
made to represent a return of happiness, because it 
announces by its elegance and its odour the happy 
season of the year. 

That shy plant, the Lily of the Vale, 

That loves the ground, and from the sun withholds 

Her pensive beauty, from the breeze her sweets. 


The Lily, whose sweet beauties seem 
As if they must be sought. 


And, sweetest to the view, 
The Lily of the Vale, whose virgin flower 
Trembles at every breeze, beneath its leafy bower. 



And ye, whose lowlier pride 
In sweet seclusion seems to shrink from view, 
You of the valley named, no longer hide 
Your blossoms, meet to twine the brow of purest bride. 

Fair flower, that, lapt in lowly glade, 
Dost hide beneath the greenwood shade, 

Than whom the vernal gale 
None fairer wakes on branch or spray, 
Our England's Lily of the May, 
Our Lily of the Vale. 

Art thou that " Lily of the field," 
Which, when the Saviour sought to shield 

The heart from blank despair, 
He showed to our mistrustful kind, 
An emblem of the thoughtful mind, 

Of God's paternal care ? 

Not thus, I trow ; for brighter shine 
To the warm skies of Palestine 

Those children of the East. 
But not the less, sweet spring-tide's flower, 
Dost thou display thy Maker's power, 

His skill and handiwork : 
Our western valleys' humbler child, 
Where, in green nook of woodland wild, 

Thy modest blossoms lurk. 

What though nor care nor art be thine 
The loom to ply, the thread to twine, 
Yet born to bloom and fade. 


Thee, too, a lovelier robe arrays, 
Than, even in Israel's brightest days, 
Her wealthiest king array'd : 

Of thy twin leaves the embowered screen, 
Which wraps thee in thy shroud of green, 

Thy Erlen-breathing smell ; 
Thy arched and purple- vested stem, 
Whence pendent many a pearly gem 

Displays a milk-white bell — 

Who forms thee thus with unseen hand 1 
Who at creation gave command, 

And willed thee thus to be ; 
And keeps thee still in being, through 
Age after age revolving?— Who 

But the great God is he ? 

Bishop Mant. 




" War," said the young mother of a family one 
day to the venerable village pastor, " why did you 
not plant a strong quickset hedge round your gar- 
den, instead of this weak hedge of flowering privet V 
The benevolent minister replied : — " When you for- 
bid your child a hurtful pleasure, the prohibition is 
sweetened by an affectionate smile, by a kind look ; 
and, if he is refractory, a mother's hand immediately 
offers some plaything to pacify him. In like man- 
ner, the pastor's hedge, while it keeps off intruders, 
should not hurt any one, but offer flowers even to 
those whom it repels. 




The winds have now purified the atmosphere, 
diffused the seeds of vegetation over the earth, and 
dispersed the gloomy vapours of winter. The air is 
fresh and pure ; the sky seems to expand above our 
head ; the lawns grow vividly green on all sides, 
and the trees push forth their young and verdant 
buds. Nature is about to put on her dress of 
flowers ; but she first prepares an harmonious ground 
for her painting ; and, covering it with one general 
tint of green, which she varies infinitely, rejoices 
the eye and cheers the heart with promise. 

We have already detected in shady dells the 
violet, the daisy, the primrose, and the golden flower 
of the dandelion. Let us now approach the skirts 
of the wood ; there the Anemone and the Periwin- 
kle stretch their long parterre of verdure and 
flowers ; these two friendly plants are mutual foils 
to each other's charms. The Anemone has velvet 
4 * 



leaves, deeply dentated, and of a delicate green ; 
whereas those of the Periwinkle are always green, 
firm, and shining ; its flower is blue, while that of 
the Anemone is of a pure white, tinged with rose 
colour at the edge ; and, enduring but a day, it 
recals to us the happy and fleeting hours of child- 

In France, the Periwinkle has been adopted as the 
emblem of the pleasures of memory and sincere 
friendship, probably in allusion to Rousseau's recol- 
lection of his friend, Madame de Warens, occa- 
sioned, after a lapse of thirty years, by the sight of 
this flower, which they had admired together. 

This plant is deeply rooted in the soil which it 
adorns. It interweaves the earth on all sides with 
its flexible shoots, and covers it with flowers, which 
seem to reflect and imitate the azure of the sky : 
thus our first affections, so warm, pure, and artless, 
appear to have a celestial origin. They mark our 
days with a moment's happiness, and to them we 
owe our sweetest recollections. 

KEATH. 91 



The meadows are covered with flowers, the 
plains with waving corn, and the hills with dark- 
some woods. Happy swains ! — ye can dance in 
the meadows ; ye can crown your brows with the 
golden wreaths of Ceres ; ye can rest yourselves in 
the shade of the woods — for to thee happy life is 
one scene of joy. 

As for me, with Melancholy for my guide, I will 
stroll to those sequestered spots where the humble 
Heath, which delights in solitude, maintains its 
ground against advancing cultivation. There, seat- 
ed beneath the drooping Broom, I will indulge my 
gloomy thoughts ; whilst creatures, unfortunate, 
harassed, and afflicted, like myself, will collect 
around mc from all sides. The partridge, chased 


by our dogs, after losing her whole family ; the doe, 
pursued by the hounds ; the skulking hare, the 
timid rabbit, at first alarmed at sight of me, will by 
degrees become familiar with my griefs : perhaps 
they will even come to my feet to seek protection 
from the persecution of men. Ye, too, will hover 
round me, industrious bees ; and if I pluck but a 
single sprig from the Heath of your solitary haunts, 
ye will come to my very hands for the honey, which 
ye gather not for yourselves, but for others. And 
you, noisy quails, will measure both for yourselves 
and for me the hours which fly away, without 
leaving behind me in these wilds either traces or 
regrets. Gentle doves, tender nightingales, your 
sighs and murmurs were made for fragrant bowers ; 
but I can no longer muse in their shade. The 
voice of the monarch of this solitude scares you 
away ; for me it has charms : with the first beams 
of the moon its melancholy tones will reach the ear. 
The owl will then issue from the hollow trunk of 
some time-worn oak. Perched on the boughs 
which hide his mossy retreat, his screech affrights 
the timid maiden as she counts the hours of her 
lover's absence; it thrills the mother watching 
beside the couch on which fever has prostrated her 

HEATH. 93 

only child ; but it soothes the unhappy man who 
has consigned to the grave all that he loved on 
earth. Often did that doleful sound awaken thee, 
unfortunate Young! speaking to thee of death and 
eternity : and if it has not inspired me, as it did 
thee, with sublime strains, it has at least given me, 
like thee, a distaste for the world and a love of soli- 




The beautiful fable of Philemon and Baucis 
caused this tree to be adopted as the emblem of con- 
jugal love. This couple lived together in the hap- 
piest harmony to extreme old age ; and, content 
with their humble hut and the little which their 
labour procured them, they knew no higher wishes 
or wants. Jupiter and Mercury one day descended 
in human form from Olympus to visit the plains of 
Phrygia. Needing refreshment, they called at seve- 
ral houses, but were refused admittance ; but Phi- 
lemon aud Baucis, the poorest couple in that part 
of the country , r received them in the most hospitable 
manner in their mean habitation. Baucis imme- 
diately heated water to wash the travellers' feet ; 


and then set before them a rural repast of fruit, 
milk, and honey. She. also produced wine, which 
she had cultivated and made with her own hands ; 
and, as the quantity sustained no diminution, the 
aged pair discovered from the circumstance the 
superior nature of their guests, and hastened to offer 
up in sacrifice to them a goose, which they had 
reared in their hut. The goose, however, escaped 
from their grasp, and sought refuge at the feet of 
the gods, who took the bird under their protection. 
On rising from the table, they ordered their kind 
hosts to follow them to the top of a neighbouring 
hill. There they beheld a flood sweeping away the 
houses of their hard-hearted neighbours, whilst their 
cottage stood uninjured amidst the raging waters 
and was transformed into a magnificent temple. Ju- 
piter then promised to grant them whatever they 
wished ; but they desired nothing more than to be 
the servants of his temple. The god graciously 
complied with their request, and they served in his 
temple for many years. At length, as they were 
one day conversing before the door of the edifice 
on the wonder of which the} r had been eye-witnesses, 
Philemon observed that Baucis was zradu illy ch. iu>- 


ing into a Linden-tree, and Baucis that her husband 
was turning into an Oak. They calmly and cheer- 
fully continued their conversation so long as they 
could see, and then took an affectionate farewell of 
each other. As trees, they stood for ages before the 
temple, and were objects of veneration to all the 
adjacent country. 

An event of modern times has contributed to 
render the Linden not less dear to all loving hearts 
than the preceding legend of fabulous antiquity. 
About the year 1790, there dwelt at Konigsberg, in 
Prussia, a pair who, united in affection, were shortly 
to be joined in the bonds of wedlock. The wedding- 
day was already fixed, when the bride, in the first 
bloom of youthful beauty, suddenly fell sick, and in a 
few hours expired. Such was the grief of the lover 
at the unexpected loss, that he, too, soon expired ; 
and on the very day on which they were to have 
been married, the remains of both were consigned to 
one and the same grave. Here they had reposed 
for some years, when over their heads sprang up 
from one root two Linden trees, which firmly en- 
twining each other, shot up into a crown, that, with 
its fragrant blossoms, yearly decks the bridal bed 


ill which two faithful hearts are inseparably 

Among the trees of central Europe, the Linden is 
known to attain the greatest age next to the Oak. 
Near Neustadt, on the Kocher, in Wirtemberg, 
there is a stately Linden, which for many centuries 
has attracted the notice of passengers, and invited 
them to rest in its shade, Its trunk is thirty-six 
feet in circumference. The branches issue from it 
at the height of eight to ten feet, in a horizontal 
direction, and are supported by pillars, partly of 
stone, partly of wood, otherwise they would break 
down by their own weight. In 1811, there were 
one hundred and twenty such pillars. This Linden 
has now withstood time and tempests for a least six 
hundred years. 

In the cemetery of the hospital of Annaberg 
in Saxony, there is a very ancient Linden tree, 
concerning which tradition relates that it was 
planted by an inhabitant of Annaberg with its 
top in the ground, and that its roots became 
branches, which now overshadow a considerable 
part of the cemetery. The planter of this tree, 
who was buried not far from it, left a sum of money, 


the interest of which is paid, agreeably to his will, 
to the chaplain of the hospital, fur delivering a sermon 
annually, in the afternoon of Trinity Sunday, beneath 
this remarkable tree. 

THYME. 99 



Flies of all shapes, beetles, of all hues, light 
butterflies, and vigilant bees, for ever surround 
the flowery tufts of Thyme. It may be that to 
these cheerful inhabitants of the air, whose life 
is a long spring, these little tufts appear like an 
immense tree, old as the earth, and covered with 
eternal verdure, begemmed with myriads of flowery 
vases, filled with honey for their express en- 

Among the Greeks, Thyme denoted the graceful 
elegance of the Attic style; because it covered 
Mount Hymettus and gave the aromatic flavour, of 
which the ancients were so fond, to the honey 
made there. " To smell of Thyme" was, there- 
fore, a commendation bestowed on those writers 
who had made themselves masters of the Attic 

Activity is a warlike virtue, always associated 


with true courage. Tt was on this account that 
the ladies of chivalrous times embroidered on the 
scarfs which they presented to their knights the 
figure of a bee hovering about a sprig of Thyme ; 
in order to recommend the union of the amiable 
with the active. 

The Wild Thyme has often been noticed by the 
poets : 

No more, my goats, shall I behold you climb 
The steepy cliffs, or crop the flow'ry Thyme. 

Dryden's Virgil. 

Guide rny way 
Through fair Lyceum's walk, the greeu retreats 
Of Academus, and the Thymy vale. 





Do you observe along the extended banks of that 
lake, whose silvery mirror reflected an unclouded 
sky, those clusters of flowers as white as snow 1 
A roseate hue colours the under side of these beau- 
teous flowers, while a tuft of fibres of extraordinary 
delicacy, and dazzling whiteness rises out of their 
alabaster cups, giving thern the appearance of fringed 
hyacinths. Expression fails to do justice to the 
elegance of this plant. To remember it for ever, 
you need but to have once seen it gently waving on 
the brink of the water, to which it seems to impart 
increased coolness and transparency. The Buck- 
bean never opens in stormy weather. Tranquillity 
is requisite to the development of its blossoms ; but 
the calm that it enjoys itself it seems to diffuse on 
all the objects around it. 

The original name of the Buck-bean was Bog- 
bane, or Bog-plant, from its place of growth. 




The Acanthus delights in hot climates by the 
side of great rivers. It thrives, nevertheless, in 
temperate climates. The tasteful ancients adorned 
their furniture, their vases and their costly dresses, 
with its elegant leaves. Virgil says that the robe of 
Helen was embroidered with a wreath of Acanthus. 

This charming model of the arts has thus be- 
come their emblem, as it might also be of the genius 
which causes its possessor to excel in them. When 
any obstacle obstructs the growth of the Acanthus, 
it puts forth fresh force and grows with additional 
vigour. Thus genius is strengthened and exalted 
by the very obstacles, which it cannot overcome. 

It is related of Callimachus the architect that, as 
he was passing near the tomb of a young female, 
who died a few days before her marriage, touched 
with pity, he approached to throw flowers on it. 
An offering had preceded his : the nurse of the 


bride had collected the flowers and veil which were 
to have adorned her on her wedding-day, placed 
them in a little basket near the tomb] on^ an Acan- 
thus plant, and covered it with a large tile. The 
following spring the leaves of the Acanthus sur- 
rounded the basket, but, impeded by the tile, they 
turned back and bent round gracefully towards their 
extremities. Callimachus, astonished at this rural 
decoration, which looked like a work of the weeping 
Graces, made it the capital of the Corinthian order 
— a charming ornament that we still imitate and 



The oak was from the remotest ages consecrated 
to Jupiter, the olive to Minerva, and the Myrtle to 
Venus, Its evergreen foliage and supple odorife- 
rous branches loaded with flowers, that appear 
destined to adorn the forehead of Love, have ren- 
dered this tree worthy of being dedicated to Venus, 
the goddess of beauty. At Rome the temple of the 
goddess was surrounded by a grove of Myrtles ; and 
in Greece she was adored under the name of Myr- 
tilla. When Venus rose from the bosom of the 
waves, the Hours presented to her a scarf of a thou- 
sand colours, and a wreath of Myrtle. After her 
victory over Pallas and Juno, she was crowned 
with Myrtle by the Loves. When surprised, one 
day, on issuing from the bath, by a troop of satyrs, 
she sought refuge behind a Myrtle bush ; and it was 
with the branches of the same plant that she re- 
venged herself on the audacious Psyche, who dared to 
compare her transitory charms to immortal beauty. 

MYRTLE. 105 

At Rome the Myrtle-garland of the Loves was 
sometimes mingled, in honour of Mars and Venus, 
with the laurel on the triumphant conqueror's 
brow. And now that triumphs have ceased at the 
Capitol, the Roman ladies have retained a strong 
predilection for this plant. They prefer its odour to 
that of the most fragrant essences, and they impreg- 
nate their baths with a water distilled from its 
leaves, persuaded that the plant of Venus must be 
favourable to beauty. If the ancients were posses- 
sed by a similar persuasion, if they truly deemed it 
the symbol of love, it was because they had observ- 
ed that the Myrtle, wherever it grows, excludes al* 
other plants. Just so love, wherever it has estab- 
lished its sway, excludes from the heart all other 



Lucerx will occupy the same spot for a long 
time ; but, when once it leaves it, it is for ever. 
This is, no doubt, the reason why it has been 
adopted as the emblem of life. 

Nothing is more beautiful than a field of Lucern 
in flower, spreading itself out to the eye, like an 
immense green carpet tipped with violet. When 
cultivated, this plant yields abundant crops, without 
requiring any care. Cut it down and it springs up 
again. The cow rejoices at the sight of it, it is a 
favourite food of the sheep, the horse, and the goat. 
A native of our climate, this valuable gift comes to 
us direct from heaven. Its possession costs us no 
trouble ; we enjoy it without thought, and with- 
out gratitude. Very often we prefer to it a flower, 
whose only merit is its transient beauty. In like 
manner we too often relinquish a certain benefit, to 
run after vain pleasures, which fly away and escape 




Weakness is fond of strength, and often delights 
in lending to the latter its own graces. Thus have 
I seen a young Honeysuckle lovingly entwine the 
gnarled trunk of an aged oak with its supple and 
delicate arms. It would seem as if this slender 
shrub, whilst climbing upward was striving to sur- 
pass in height the monarch of the forest: soon, 
however, as though finding its effort useless, it 
droops gracefully down and encircles the brow of 
its friend with elegant festoons of fragrant flowers. 
Thus Love sometimes unites the timid maiden to 
the ruthless soldier. Unhappy Desdemonia ! it 
was the admiration awakened by courage and 
valour, but was also the feeling of thine own weak- 
ness, that attached thy heart to the terrible Othello : 
but jealousy caused thy destruction by the very 
hand that should have protected thee ! 

This excellent climbing shrub, which we also 


call the woodbine, trained against our English 
cottages, at once delights the eye and gratifies the 
smell by the exquisite fragrance of its blossom ; 
whilst it confers on those humble dwellings a cha- 
racter of cheerfulness unknown in other countries. 

A Honeysuckle, on the sunny side, 
Hung around the lattices its fragrant trumpets. 


Copious of flowers, the woodbine pale and wan 
But well compensating her sickly looks 
With never cloying odours, early and late. 


It begins to flower in May, and continues to put 
forth its blossoms till the end of summer. 

BROOM. 109 



In the year 1234, St. Louis of France, after the 
coronation of his queen, chose the flower of this 
plant as the insignia of a new order of knighthood. 
The members of this order wore a chain composed 
of flowers of the Broom entwined with white 
enamelled lilies, from which was suspended a gold 
cross with the inscription : Ex alt at hiimiles — 
" He exalteth the humble." With this order he 
associated a body-guard consisting of one hundred 
nobles, on the back and front of whose coat was 
likewise embroidered a Broom flower, over which a 
hand issuing from the clouds held a crown, with 
the inscription : Dens exaltat Juimiles — " God 
exalleth the humble." 

This plant, called in Latin Genista, and in 
French Genet, gave the name of Plantagenct to 
the sovereigns of England for several centuries. 
Lemon, in his " English Etymology," bays : "Four- 


teen princes of the family of Plantagenet have sate 
on the throne of England for upwards of three hun- 
dred years, and yet very few of our countrymen 
have known either the reason of that appellation or 
the etymology of it : but history tells us that Geof- 
fry, Count of Anjou, acquired the surname of Plan- 
tagenet from the incident of his wearing a sprig of 
Broom on his helmet on a day of battle. This 
Geoflry was second husband to Matilda, or Maud, 
Empress of Germany, and daughter of Henry I. of 
England, and from this Plantagenet family were 
descended all our Edwards and Henries." 

Skinner assigns a different origin to this illustri- 
ous name. He tells us that " the house of Anjou 
derived the name of Plantagenet from a prince 
thereof, who, having killed his brother to enjoy his 
principality, afterwards repented, and made a voy- 
age to the Holy Land to expiate his crime, 
scourging himself every night with a rod made of 
the plant Genet, Genista, Broom." And we are 
told elsewhere that he was nicknamed Plantagenet 
from the use which he had made of the Broom. 

There are three vaiieties of Broom, with yellow, 
white, and purple flowers. The first is the most 


Their groves o' sweet myrtle let foreign lands reckon, 
Where bright beaming summers exalt the perfume : 

Far dearer to me yon lone glen o' green breckan, 
Wi' the burn stealing under the lang yellow Broom. 


The wilding Broom as sweet, which gracefully, 
Flings its long tresses, waving in yellow beauty. 


The purple heath and golden broom. 
Which scent the passing gale. 


The Broom and the furze are perpetually asso- 
ciated. Indeed, the latter is sometimes called by 
botanists Genista Spinosa — the thorny Broom, and 
provincially whin, or gorse. It grows abundantly 
on all our wastes ; and it is recorded of Linneus that 
when he visited England in 1736, he was so much 
delighted with the golden blossom of the furze, 
which he then saw for the first time on a common 
near London, that he fell on his knees, enraptured 
at the sight. He conveyed some of the plants to 
Sweden, but complained that he could never pre- 
serve it in the garden during the winter. 



Come away ! the sunny hours 
Woo thee far to founts and bowers I 
O'er the very waters now. 

In tlieir play, 
Flowers are shedding beauty's glow ; 

Come away! 
Whore the lily's tender gleam 
Quivers on the glowing stream, 

Come away ! 

All the air is fill'd with sound, 
Soft, and sultry, and profound ; 
Murmurs through the shadowy grass 

Lightly stray ; 
Faint winds whisper as they pass 

Come away ! 
Where the bee's deep music swells 
From the trembling foxglove bells — 

Come away ' 

SUMMER. 113 

In the deep heart of the rose, 
Now the crimson love-hue glows ; 
Now the glow-worm's lamp by night 

Sheds a ray 
Dreary, starry, greenly bright — 

Come away! 
Where the fairy cup-moss lies, 
With the wild wood strawberries, 

Come away ! 




Who that ever could sing has not sung the Rose ! 
The poets have not exaggerated its heauty, or com- 
pleted its panegyric. They have called it daughter 
of heaven, ornament of the earth, glory of spring : 
but what expressions could ever do justice to the 
charms of this beautiful flower ! Look at it grace- 
fully rising from its elegant foliage, surrounded by 
its numerous buds : you would say that this queen 
of flowers sports with the air which fans her, that 
she decorates herself with the dew-drops which im- 
pearl her, that she smilingly meets the sunny rays 
which expand her bosom. Nature seems to have 
exhausted all her skill in the freshness, the beauty 
of form, the fragrance, the delicate colour, and the 
gracefulness which she has bestowed upon the Rose. 

'/ / 7 / / // 

ROSE. 115 

And then, it embellishes the whole earth ; it is the 
commonest of flowers. The emblem of all ages, the 
interpreter of all our feelings, the Rose mingles with 
our festivities, our joys, and our griefs. Modesty 
borrows its delicate blush ; it is given as the prize 
of virtue ; it is the image of youth, innocence, and 
pleasure ; it is consecrated to Venus, the goddess of 
beauty, and, like her, possesses a grace more exquisite 
than beauty itself. 

Anacreon, the poet of love, has celebrated the 
Rose in an ode, thus rendered by our English Ana- 
creon : 

While we invoke the wreathed spring, 
Resplendent Rose ! to thee we'll sing, 
Resplendent Rose ! the flower of flowers, 
Whose breath perfumes Olympus' bowers ; 
Whose virgin blush, of chasten'd dye, 
Enchants so much our mortal eye, 
Oft has the poet's magic tongue 
The Rose*s fair luxuriance sung ; 
And long the Muses, heavenly maids, 
Have rear'd it in their tuneful shades. 
When, at the early glance of morn, 
It sleeps upon the glittering thorn, 
'Tis sweet to dare die tangled fence, 
To cull the timid fiow'ret thence, 
And wipe, with tender hand, away 
The tear that on its blushes lay ! 


'Tis sweet to hold the infant stems, 

Yet dropping with Aurora's gems, 

And fresh inhale the spicy sighs 

That from the weeping buds arise. 

When revel reigns, when mirth is high. 

And Bacchus beams in every eye, 

Our rosy fillets scent exhale, 

And fill with balm the fainting gale ! 

Oh, there is nought in nature bright, 

Where Roses do not shed their light ! 

Where morning paints the orient skies, 

Her fingers burn w ith roseate dyes ! 

And when, at length, with pale decline, 

Its florid beauties fade and pine, 

Sweet as in youth its balmy breath 

Diffuses odour e'en in death ! 

O, whence could such a plant have sprung? 

Attend — for thus the tale is sung; — 

When humid from the silvery stream, 

Effusing beauty's warmest beam, 

Venus appeared in flushing hues, 

Mellowed by Ocean's briny dews ; 

When, in the starry courts above. 

The pregnant brain of mighty Jove 

Disclosed the nymph of azure glance ! 

The nymph who shakes the martial lance ! 

Then, then, in strange eventful hour. 

The earth produced an infant flower, 

Which sprung with blushing tinctures dress'd, 

And wanton'd o'er its parent breast. 

The gods beheld this brilliant birth, 

And hailed the Rose, the boon of earth ! 

ROSE. 1 17 

With nectar drops, a ruby tide, 
The sweetly orient buds they dyed, 
And bade them bloom, the flowers divine 
Of him who sheds the teeming vine ; 
And bade them on the spangled thorn 
Expand their bosoms to the morn. 

According to ancient Fable, the red colour of the 
Rose may be traced to Venus, whose delicate foot, 
when she was hastening to the relief of her 
beloved Adonis, was pierced by a thorn, that drew 

Which on the White Rose being shed, 
Made it for ever after red. 


Its beautiful tint, is traced to another source by 
modern poet : 

As erst, in Eden's blissful bowers, 
Young Eve survey'd her countless flowers, 
An opening Rose of purest white 
She marked with eye that beam'd delight, 
Its leaves she kiss'd, and straight it drew 
From beauty's lip the vermeil hue. 



The origin of that exquisitely beautiful variety, 
the Moss Rose, is thus fancifully accounted for : 

The Angel of the Flowers, one day, 

Beneath a Rose Tree sleeping lay, 

That Spirit to whose charge is given 

To bathe young buds in dews from heaven. 

Awaking from his high repose, 

The Angel whispered to the Rose : 

" O fondest object of my care, 

Still fairest found where all are fair, 

For the sweet shade thou*st given to me, 

Ask what thou wilt, 'tis granted thee." 

Then said the Rose with deepening glow, 
" On me another grace bestow." 
The Spirit paused in silent thought — 
What grace was there that flower had not J 
'Twas but a moment— o'er the Rose 
A veil of moss the Angel throws ; 
And robed in Nature's simplest weed, 
Could there a flower that Rose exceed? 

Pfeffel, a German poet, has pleasingly accounted 
for the Origin of the Yellow Rose, the emblem of 
envy, in the following manner : 

Once a White Rose-bi:d reared her head,. 
And peevishly to Flora said 
" Look at my sister's blushing hue — 
Pray, mother, let mc have it too." 

ROSE. 119 

" Nay, child," was Flora's mild reply, 
11 Be thankful for such gifts as I 
Have deem'd befitting to dispense — 
Thy dower the hue of innocence." 
When did Persuasions voice impart 
Content and peace to female heart 
Where baleful Jealousy bears sway, 
And scares each gentler guest away ! 

The Rose still grumbled and complained, 

Her mother's bounties still disdained. 

4i Well, then," said angered Flora — " take" — 

She breathed upon her as she spake — 

" Henceforth no more in simple vest 

Of innocence shalt thou be drest — 

Take that which better suits thy mind— 

The hue for Jealousy designer! I" 

The Yellow Rose has from that hour 
Borne evidence of Envy's power. 

There is another strongly marked variety of this 
flower in the Thornless Rose. The author of that 
affecting tale, " The Leper of Aoste," asserts that 
the thorns of the Rose are produced by cultivation ; 
and this theory naturally suggested the emblem of 
ingratitude which has been adopted. . In both 
these assumptions, however, there appears to be a 


wide departure from the ideas usually attached to 
a Rose without a thorn, which would more naturally 
present the image of love without alloy. 

In the " Legend of the Rose," we find this 
account of the origin of the armour by which this 
flower is defended : 

Young Love, rambling through the wood, 

Found me in my solitude, 

Bright with dew and freshly blown, 

And trembling to the Zephyr's sighs ; 
But as he stooped to gaze upon 

The living gem with raptured eyes, 
It chanced a bee was busy there, 
Searching for its fragrant fare ; 
And, Cupid, stooping too, to sip, 
The angry insect stung his lip; 
And, gushing from the ambrosial cell, 
One bright drop on my bosom fell. 

Weeping, to his mother he 

Told the tale of treachery, 

And she her vengeful boy to please, 

Strung his bow with captive bees, 

But placed upon my slender stem 

The poisoned sting she plucked from them : 

And none since that eventful morn 

Have found the flower without a thorn 

By the ancients the Rose was regarded as 


ROSE. 121 

emblem of joy. Accordingly, Comus, the god of 
feasting, was represented as a handsome young 
man, crowned with a garland of Roses, whose 
leaves glistened with dew-drops. As it was well 
known, even in those early times, that when the 
heart is full the mouth will run over, especially 
during the intoxication of mirth or of pleasure, the 
ancients feigned that sportive Cupid presented a 
Rose to Harpocrates, the grave god of silence, and 
thus made this flower a symbol of secrecy and 
silence. As such, a Rose was fastened up over the 
table at entertainments, that the sight of the flower 
might remind the guests that the mirthful sallies in 
which any of them might indulge were not to be 
proclaimed in the market-place. This custom gave 
rise to the saying " under the rose," which was 
equivalent to an injunction of secrecy. 

The Rose became celebrated in English history, 
from its having been adopted in the fifteenth cen- 
tury as the badge of the rival houses of York and 
Lancaster, the white being chosen by the former, 
the red by the latter. Shakspeare, in his Henry the 
Sixth, represents this feud as having originated in 
the Temple Garden. The Earls of Somerset, Suf- 


folk, and Warwick, Richard Plantagenet, nephew 
and heir of Edmund Mortimer, with Vernon, and 
another lawyer, are the characters introduced. Suf- 
folk says: 

Within the Temple Hall we were too loud: 
The garden here is more convenient. 

Plant ag. Since you are tongue-tied, and so loth to speak, 
In dumb significance proclaim yuur thoughts: 
Let him that is a true-born gentleman, 
And stands upon the honour of his birth, 
If he supposes I have pleaded truth, 
From off this 1 riar pluck a White Rose with me. 

Somers. Let him that is no coward, nor no flatterer, 
But dare maintain the party of the truth, 
Pluck a Red Rose from off this thorn with me. 

This example is followed by their respective 
friends, and after a threatening altercation, War- 
wick, addressing Plantagenet, says: 

In signal uf my love to thee, 
Will I upon thy party wear this Rose : 
And here I prophecy, this brawl to-day, 
Grown to this faction in the Temple Garden, 
Shall send, between the Red Rose and the White, 
A thousand souls to death and deadly night. 

ROSE. 123 

What torrents of blood were shed in the civil 
wars, called the Wars of the Roses, which suc- 
ceeded, history has duly recorded. The subsequent 
blending of the interests of the two houses, and 
their union by the marriage of Henry VII. with the 
heiress of the York family, are prettily typified in 
the colouring of the York and Lancaster Rose. 

In the East, the Rose is an object of peculiar 
esteem, and the acceptance of this flower when 
offered is a token of the highest favour. However 
interesting it might be to collect the various oriental 
legends and traditions in which the Rose acts a 
principal part, I must abstain from the attempt, 
otherwise this single article might be swelled to 
the size of a decent volume, especially if I should 
include the many charming illustrations of the love 
of the nightingale for the Rose. In a fragment by the 
celebrated Persian poet Attar, entitled Bulbul 
Nameh — The Book of the Nightingale — all the 
birds appear before Solomon, and charge the night- 
ingale with disturbing their rest by the broken and 
plaintive strains which he warbles forth in a sort of 
frenzy and intoxication. The nightingale is sum- 
moned, questioned, and acquitted by the wise king, 
because the bird assures him that his vehement 


love for the Rose drives him to distraction, and 
causes him to break forth into those languishing and 
touching complaints, which are laid to his charge. 
Thus the Persians believe that the nightingale in 
spring flutters around the Rose-bushes, uttering 
incessant complaints, till, overpowered by the 
strong scent, he drops stupified on the ground. 

Among the ancients it was customary to crown 
new-married persons with a chaplet of Red and 
White Roses ; and, in the processions of the Cory- 
bantes, the goddess Cybele, the protectress of cities, 
was pelted with White Roses. The pelting with 
Roses is still common in Persia, being practised 
during the whole time that these flowers are in 
blossom. A company of young men repair to the 
places of public entertainment to amuse the guests 
with music, singing, and dancing ; and, in their 
way through the streets, they pelt the passengers 
whom they meet with Roses, and receive a little 
gratuity in return. 

In the middle ages, the queen of flowers contribu- 
ted to a singular popular festival at Treviso, in 
Italy. In the middle of the city, the inhabitants 
erected a castle, the walls of which were formed of 

ROSE. 125 

curtains, carpets, and silk hangings. The most 
distinguished unmarried females of the place de- 
fended this fortress, which was attacked by the 
youth of the other sex. The missiles with which 
both parties fought consisted of apples, almonds, 
nutmegs, lilies, narcissuses, violets, but chiefly of 
Roses, which supplied the place of artillery. In- 
stead of musketry, they discharged volleys of Rose- 
water and other liquid perfumes, by means of 
syringes. This entertainment attracted thousands 
of spectators from far and near, and the emperor 
Frederick Barbarossa himself accounted it one of 
the highest diversions that he had ever enjoyed. 

In like manner, St. Medard, bishop of Noyon, 
in France, instituted in the sixth century a festival 
at Salency, his birth-place, for adjudging one of the 
most interesting prizes that piety has ever offered 
to virtue. This prize consists of a simple crown 
of Roses, bestowed on the girl who is acknowledged 
by all her competitors to be the most amiable, 
modest, and dutiful. The founder of this festival 
enjoyed the high gratification of crowning his own 
sister as the first Rose-queen of Salency. The 
lapse of ages, which has overturned so many 


thrones and broken so many sceptres, has spared 
this simple institution ; and the crown of Rose still 
continues to be awarded to the most virtuous of the 
maidens of that obscure village. 




One of the most eminent French authors 
conceived the plan of writing a general history 
of nature, after the model of the ancients and 
of several moderns. A strawberry plant, which 
by chance grew under his window, deterred him 
from his rash design. He investigated the Straw- 
berry, and in doing so, discovered so many 
wonders, that he felt convinced that the study 
of a single plant, and of its inhabitants, was suffi- 
cient to occupy a whole life. He therefore relin- 
quished his design, gave up the ambitious title 
which he meditated for his work, and contented 
himself with modestly calling it " Studies of 

From this book, worthy of Pliny and of Plato, 
may be derived a taste for observation and for the 
higher class of literature ; and it is there especially 
that the student will find a complete history of the 
Strawberry. This humble plant delights in the 


shelter of our woods, and covers the borders with 
that delicious fruit which belongs to any one who 
pleases to gather it. It is a charming reserve 
which nature has subtracted from the exclusive 
right of property, and which she rejoices in render- 
ing common property to all her children. 

The flowers of the Strawberry form pretty 
bouquets ; but where is the barbarous hand that, in 
gathering them, would rob the future of its fruits ! 
It is delightful to find, among the glaciers of the 
Alps, the plants and flowers of the Strawberry in all 
seasons of the year. When the traveller — scorched 
by the sun, and sinking with fatigue on those rocks, 
old as the world, amidst forests of fir half over- 
whelmed with avalanches — vainly seeks a cabin 
to shelter him, or a fountain to refresh him, he 
suddenly perceives troops of young girls advancing 
from the defiles of the rock, bearing baskets of 
Strawberries that perfume the air : they appear at 
once on the crag above him, and in the yawning 
dells beneath. It would seem as if each rock and 
tree were guarded by one of those nymphs whom 
Tasso placed at the gate of Armida's enchanted 
gardens. But though equally attractive, the young 
Swiss girls are less dangerous ; and, while offering 


their alluring baskets to the traveller, instead of 
magically arresting his steps, they enable him to 
recruit his strength and to renew his journey. 

The learned Linneus was cured of frequent attacks 
of gout by the use of Strawberries. Often have 
they restored health to the invalid when all other 
medicines have failed. They constitute a favourite 
accompaniment of the lordly feast, and the most 
exquisite luxury of the rural repast. This charming 
fruit, which vies in freshness and perfume, with 
the bud of the sweetest of flowers, delights the eye, 
the taste, and the smell at the same time. Yet 
there are persons so unhappy as to dislike Straw- 
berries, and to swoon at the sight of a rose. Is this 
astonishing, when there are persons who turn pale 
at the sight of superior merit, on hearing of a 
noble action, as if the sight or record of virtue were 
a reproach to themselves 1 Fortunately, these me- 
lancholy exceptions take nothing from the charm of 
virtue, frem the beauty of the rose, or from the per- 
fection which characterizes the most delicious of 




This plant, to which ancient superstition attribut- 
ed the virtue of defending persons from phantoms 
and spectres, and driving away devils, whence 
it was called Fuga Demonum, has been named by 
modern bigotry St. John's-wort. For the same 
reason it was also called Solterrestres, the Terres- 
trial Sun, because the spirits of darkness were 
believed to vanish at the approach of that luminary. 
Growing close to the earth, its large yellow flower, 
whose hundreds of chives form so many rays, headed 
by spark-like anthers, it reminds us of small wheel- 
fireworks, and forms a happy contrast with the 
azure flowers of the periwinkle. 

It forms an appropriate emblem of superstition, 
but by some is regarded as a symbol of happiness, 
on account of the happy confidence with which it 
inspires the fond believers in its imaginary virtues. 




The Red Valerian grows naturally on the rocks 
of the Alps, and, from the facility with which it 
propagates itself in the garden or on old walls, it is 
made the emblem of an accommodating disposition. 
If not indigenous in this country, it is conjectured 
to have been introduced very early, on account 
of the situations where it is found growing, which 
are generally the old walls of colleges, or the ruins 
of monastic buildings. 

From its predilection for such situations, this 
plant no doubt derived its old English name of Sete- 
wale. Chaucer mentions it by this apellation, so 
long ago as the time of Edward III. 

Ther springen herbis grele and smale, 
The Licoris and the Setewale ; 

and Dr. Turner, who compiled his Herbal about 
the middle of the sixteenth century, calls it setwall. 


The Valerian is too large and scrambling a plant 
to hold a place in the parterre of choice flowers ; 
besides which, cats are so fond of the smell of its 
blossom as to be attracted to it, and by rolling over 
the plant to destroy its beauty, as well as that of 
the contiguous flowers. They are equally fond of 
its root, which has a disagreeable smell : they will 
roll on it and gnaw it to pieces with ecstatic delight ; 
and it seems to produce in them a kind of pleasing 

The root of the Valerian is considered as a 
valuable remedy for many of those ailments which 
luxury engenders in the human frame ; exerting a 
peculiar influence on the nervous system, reviving 
the spirits, and strengthening the sight. 




The Jasmine seems to have been created ex- 
pressly to be the happy emblem of an amiable 
disposition. When brought from India, about the 
year 1560, by Spanish navigators, the slenderness 
of its branches and the delicate brightness of its 
starry flowers were universally admired : to preserve 
so elegant a plant, it was thought necessary to place 
it in the hothouse, which seemed to suit it perfectly 
well. The orangery was then tried, and there it 
grew surprisingly. It was then risked in the 
open air, and now, without needing any sort 
of care, it withstands the utmost severity of 

In all situations, the amiable Jasmine suffers its 
supple branches to be trained in any form that the 
gardener chooses to give them : most commonly 
forming a living tapestry for our arbours or the 


walls of our houses or gardens, and every where 
throwing out a profusion of delicate and charming 
flowers, which perfume the air, offering to the light 
butterfly cups worthy of him, and to the busy bee 
abundance of fragrant hone3 T . 

The rustic lover unites the Jasmine with the Rose 
to adorn the bosom of his beloved ; and often does 
a wreath of this simple combination encircle the 
brow of the princess. 

And brides, as delicate and fair 

As the White Jasmine flowc rs they wear, 

Hath Yemen in her blissful clime; 
Who lull'd in coul kiosk or bower, 

Before their mirrors count the time, 
And grow still lovelier every hour. 


From the numberless poetical tributes that 
have been paid to this plant, we cull the following 
lines : 

My slight and slender Jasmine-tree, 

That bloomest on my border tower, 
Thou art more dearly loved by me 

Than all the wealth of fairy bower. 
I ask not, while I near thee dwell, 

Arabia's spice or Syria's rose ; 
Thy light festoons more freshly smell, 

Thy virgin white more freshly glows. 


My mild and winsome Jasmine-tree, 

That climbest up the dark gray wall, 
Thy tiny flowerets seem in glee 

Like silver spray-drops down to fall. 

Lokd Morpeth. 

A variety of the Jasmine, with large double 
flowers and exquisite scent, was first procured 
in 1699 from Goa, by the grand-duke of Tuscany, 
and, so jealous was he of being the sole possessor 
of this species, that he strictly forbade his gardener 
to give a cutting of it to any person whatever. The 
gardener would probably have obeyed this injunc- 
tion had he not been in love ; but, on the birthday 
of his mistress, he presented her with a nosegay, in 
which he had placed a sprig of this rare species of 
Jasmine. Delighted with the fragrance of its flow- 
ers, the girl planted the sprig in fresh mould ; it 
continued green all the year, and next summer 
shot forth anew and blossomed. Instructed by 
her lover, she soon began to raise cuttings from 
this plant and to sell them at a high price ; by this 
means she amassed a little fund, which enabled 
her to marry the gardener, who was as poor as 
she was herself before this lucky accident. It is 
said that, in memory of this event, the damsels 


of Tuscany still wear a wreath of Jasmine on 
their wedding-day, and that it has given rise to 
this saying, that " a girl worthy of wearing the 
Jasmine-wreath is rich enough to make a husband 

PINK. 137 



The primitive Pink is simple red or white, and 
scented ; by cultivation, the petals have been 
enlarged and multiplied, and its colour infinitely 
varied, from the darkest purple to the purest white, 
with all the hues of red, from the rich crimson to 
the pale rose, with which yellow is also frequently 
blended. In some of these flowers we see the eye 
of the pheasant painted ; while others are exquisitely 
marbled, striped, and figured. In some varieties 
two opposite colours are abruptly diversified, while 
in others they seem mingled and softened off in 
shades. Under all its diversities, however, it retains 
its delicious, spicy fragrance, and hence has been 
made the emblem of woman's love, which no cir- 
cumstances can change : 

Alas! the love of woman! it is known 
To be a lovely and fearful thing ; 
For all of theirs upon that die is thrown, 
And if 'tis lost, life has no more to bring 
To them but mockeries of the past alone. 



It is a feartul thing, 
To love as I love thee ; to feel the world, 
The bright, the beautiful, joy-giving world— 
A blank without thee. Never more to me 
Can hope, joy, fear, wear different seeming. Now 
I have no hope that does not dream for thee ; 
I have no joy that is not shared by thee ; 
I have no fear that does not dread for thee. 

L. E. L. 

Florists designate two principal divisions of 
these flowers, Pinks and Carnations. The former 
are marked by a spot resembling an eye, whence 
the French name cellit, and a more humble growth. 
The flower of the Carnation is much larger than 
that of the Pink. Some derive its name from the 
Latin word for flesh colour, which may have been 
the original colour of the flower ; but Spenser, who 
was remarkable for his care in retaining the old 
manner of spelling, calls these flowers coronations : 

Bringe hether the pinke and purple cullambine, 

With gelliflowres ; 
Bring coronations and sops in wine, 

Worn of paramours. 

They were also called clove-gelliflowers, from 
their perfume resembling that of the spice so called, 

PINK. 139 

and sops in wine, because they were on that 
account frequently used to flavour dainty dishes, as 
well as wine and other liquors. Thus, so early as 
the time of Edward III., Chaucer says : 

Then springen herbis grete and smale, 
The licoris and the setewale, 
And many a clove gilofre, 

to put in ale, 

Whether it be moist or stale. 

And Shakspeare makes Perdita say : 

The fairest flowers o' the season 
Are our carnations and streak'd gilliflowers. 

Those beautifully painted flowers, the Indian 
Pink and the Sweet-willtem, belong to this 

Matthisson, a German writer, describes a scene 
witnessed by him near Grenoble in France, which 
must deeply interest every heart capable of sympa- 
thizing in the feelings of parting lovers. " Not 
far from Susa, where the road of the Cenis begins to 
ascend, there is a chapel dedicated to the Blessed 
Virgin. Before the simple altar, surrounded by 


vases of flowers, where the image of the Virgin was 
faintly lighted by a single lamp, knelt a girl of 
about eighteen, absorbed in devotion, and her dark 
eyes filled with tears. She was one of those nymph- 
like figures which the magic pencil of Angelica 
Kauffman was fond of transferring to the canvas. 
In her clasped hand she held a bouquet of clove 
carnations, tied with a silk ribbon, of the delightful 
colour of hope. With such devotion prays the 
saint in that masterpiece of Garofalo's, in the 
cathedral of Ferrara, in whose folded hands the artist 
in allusion to his own name has placed a nosegay 
of the same flowers. The morning was so lovely 
and the air so mild that I had left the caniage to 
follow me, and was walking forward alone. Near 
the chapel I seated myself on a mass of rock. The 
girl rose from prayer, and presently appeared a 
hale young man driving three loaded horses. The 
moment she saw him she flew into his arms. Not 
a word passed on either side. Amidst tears and 
kisses, she presented to him the bouquet of carna- 
tions with an inexpressible look of tenderness, 
strove to speak, but could not utter a word. The 
young man placed his flowers in the bosom with as 

PINK. 141 

much reverence as if they had been the relics of a 
saint. The fond girl had been praying for the 
safety of her lover during the dangerous journey 
on which he was setting out, and had waited at 
the chapel for the farewell embrace." 




I wish that our botanists would attach a moral 
idea to all the plants they wish to describe. They 
would thus form a sort of universal dictionary, 
understood by all nations, and enduring as the 
world itself, since each spring would reproduce it 
without the slightest alteration of the characters. 
The altars of the great Jupiter are overthrown : 
the forests which witnessed the mysteries of the 
Druids no longer exist; the pyramids of Egypt will 
some day disappear, buried like the Sphynx, be- 
neath the sands of the desert : but the lotus and 
acanthus will still blossom on the banks of the 
Nile; the misletoe will still grow upon the oak; 
and the Vervain upon the barren hills. 

Vervain was employed by the ancients in various 
kinds of divinations : they ascribe to it a thousand 
properties, and among others that of reconciling 
v enP!nies. Whenever the Roninns sent their heralds 


to offer peace or war to nations, one of them always 
carried a sprig of Vervain. The Druids, both in 
Gaul and Britain, regarded the Vervain with the 
same veneration as the misletoe, and offered sacri- 
fices to the earth before they cut this plant in spring, 
which was a ceremony of great pomp. 

The Druids held their power through the igno- 
rance and superstition of the people, and, being 
acquainted with the qualities of plants and other 
objects of Nature, they ascribed their effects to the 
power of magic and divination, pretending to work 
miracles, to exhibit astonishing appearances, and to 
penetrate into the counsels of Heaven. Although 
so many ages have passed away since the time of 
the Druids, the belief in their pretended spells is not 
yet wholly abolished. Thus in the northern pro- 
vinces of France the shepherds still continue to 
gather the Vervain, with ceremonies and words 
known only to themselves, and to express its juices 
under certain phases of the moon. At once the 
doctors and conjurors of their village, they alter- 
nately cure the complaints of their masters or fill 
them with dread ; for the same means which relieve 
their ailments enable them to cast a spell on their 
cattle and on the hearts of their daughters. They 


insist that this power is given to them by Vervain, 
especially when the damsels are young and hand- 

Thus Vervain is still the plant of spells and 
enchantments, as it was among the ancients. 

MALLOW. 145 



T - plan! : ~ used by the C "-v-.eks and Romans 
as an article of diet, as it ic still by the people of 
Eg; From this sjaci 'ation of Job: 

" V ... . ?ws by tr .:- lea and juniper- 

roc eir meat 1" we learn that it afforded food 

in the earliest times to those wandering tribes, which 
chose rather to pitch their tents in the wilderness 
and to depend on the spontaneous gifts of Bountiful 
Nature, than to dwell in permanent habitations and 
to labour fcr their support. 

The common mallow, the friend of the poor man, 
grows naturally beside the brook that quenches his 
tl ; 'st, and around the hut in which he dwells; and 
it borders the road-sides in most parts of Europe, 
Though it continues la blossom from the month ol 
May to the end of October, yet its lowers never tire 
the eye, their petals being of a deiicc.te, reddish, 
purple, sometimes varying to a whitish, or inclining 


to a blueish cast, with three or four darker streaks 
running from the base. 

The flower, stalk, leaf, and root, of this plant are 
all beneficial to man. With its different juices are 
composed syrups and ointments, equally agreeable to 
the taste and conducive to health. The way-lost 
traveller has occasionally found in its root a whole- 
some and substantial food. We need but look down 
to our feet to discover, throughout all Nature, proofs 
of her love and provident care ; but this affectionate 
mother has often concealed, in plants as well as in 
human beings, the greatest virtues under the sim- 
plest appearance. 

It is, nevertheless, fortunate for the husbandman 
that Nature should have assigned to the Mallow a 
place on the banks and borders of fields, and not 
scattered it over the meadows, where its spreading 
branches would have injured the turf, and where, as 
cattle in general refuse to eat this plant, it would 
have soon overrun and smothered other vegetation. 




Adonis was killed, while hunting, by a boar. 
Venus, who, for his sake, had relinquished the joys 
of Cythera, shed tears for the fate of her favourite. 
They were not lost ; the earth received them, and 
immediately produced a light, delicate plant, covered 
with flowers resembling drops of blood. Bright 
and transient flowers, too faithful emblems of the 
pleasures of life, ye were consecrated by Beauty 
herself to painful recollections ! 

That this flower owes its name to the favourite 
Venus is not to be disputed ; but, whether the god- 
dess of beauty changed her lover into this plant or 
the anemone it would be difficult to decide, since 
the Linnean system of dividing plants into families 
did not exist when the gods and goddesses made 
love upon earth ; and, before the time of the Swedish 
botanist the Adonis was classed among the anemones, 
which it greatly resembles. 




The Lily's height bespake command— 

A fair, imperial flower ; 
She seemed designed for Flora's hand, 

The sceptre of her power. 

The beauty and delicacy of the Lily have beeE 
celebrated by the writers of all ages. So highly 
was it esteemed by the Jews that they imitated its 
form in the decorations of their first magnificent 
temple ; and Christ himself described it as being 
more splendid than the great King Solomon in his 
most gorgeous apparel. 

Observe the rising Lily's snowy grace, 

Observe the various vegetable race ; 

They neither toil nor spin, but careless grow : 

Yet see how warm they blush, how bright they glow, 

What regal vestments can with them compare ! 

What king so shining, or what queen so fair ! 


According to the heathen mythology, there was 

LILY. 149 

originally only one species of Lily, namely, the 
orange coloured ; and the white was produced by 
the following circumstance. Jupiter, being desirous 
to render Hercules immortal, prevailed on Juno to 
take a deep draught of nectar ; which, having been 
prepared by Somnus, threw the queen of the gods 
into a profound slumbeT. Jupiter took advantage 
of this to place the infant Hercules to her breast, 
that the divine milk might ensure his immortality. 
The infant, in his eagerness, drew the milk faster 
than he could swallow it, and some drops fell to the 
earth, from which immediately sprung the White 

The ladies on the Continent have long held in 
the highest esteem a cosmetic prepared from the 
flowers of the White Lily by means of a vapour- 
bath. It is said to preserve and improve the fresh- 
ness of the complexion, and to remove pimples and 



This flower, which is now become the pride of 
every British parterre, has been made the emblem 
of lasting beauty ; for, though it is less graceful than 
the rose, and not so superb as the lily, its splendour 
is more durable and its fragrance of longer contin- 
uance. It was one of the earliest inmates of our 
gardens that was cultivated by the dames of baronial 
castles, whence it was formerly called castle 
gillyflower and dames' violet ; for the name of violet 
was given to many flowers which had either a purple 
tint or an agreeable smell. The name of gilly- 
flower was also common to other plants, as the 
wall-gillyflower (wall flower) and the clove-gilly- 
flower, a species of pink or carnation. 

Few flowering plants have been so much and so 
rapidly improved by cultivation as the Stock. 
Within the last two centuries, its nature has been 
so completely changed by the art of the florist, that 
what was in queen Elizabeth's time, but one degree 

STOCK. 151 

removed from a small mountain or sea-side flower, 
is now become almost a shrub in size, whose branches 
are covered with blossoms little inferior in dimen- 
sions to the rose, and so thickly set as to form a 
mass of beauty not surpassed by any of the exoticks 
which the other quarters of the globe have poured 
into our gardens. Phillips mentions a Stock grown 
at Notting Hill, near Bayswater, which measured 
eleven feet nine inches in circumference, in May, 

Stocks are produced of several colours, both 
double and single red, white, purple, and speckled. 
Of these the bright red or carmine Stock must ever 
remain the favourite variety. The principal branches 
of this fragrant family are the Ten-week Stock, so 
named from flowering in about ten weeks after it 
is sown ; and the Brompton, which does not blossom 
till about twelve months after sowing, and was first 
cultivated in the neighbourhood of Brompton. 
Phillips gives an amusing account of the beneficial 
effect which the sight and name of this flower had 
on the spirits of an acquaintance with whom he was 
making a tour in Normandy, in the first summer 
after the restoration of Louis XVIII. " He had 
been induced to join a small party, and leaves his 


home, for the first time, to visit the opposite coast ; 
but so truly Brit'sh were his habits, that nothing 
could please or satisfy him. The soup was meagre, 
the p< ^age acid, the peas sweet, the wine sfriur, ihe 
coffee bitter: the girls brown, their eyes too 
;heir caps too high, thei- petticoats too shi 
'language unintelligr ' eir houses old, t he inns 

uirty, the country too ... the ro.'J' right 

in short, he saw every :. Lg with such disconl.n.ed 
eyes as to render the p ^comfortable, until good 

fortune led us to inn, where, in a small 

garden, were growing several fine Stocks, *. 
he affirmed, were the first good things he had seen 
since he left Sussex. On hearing the landlady 
acknowledge them to be de Girojliers de Brompton, 
he insisted on halting a.': her house, where he treated 
the party with a dejeuner d lafourchette, and left 
the village with a sprig of the Brompton stock in 
his button-hole, his eyes sparkling with champaigne 
and good-humour, which lasted for the remainder of 
the journey, during which he often exclaimed, 
' Thanks to the Brompton Stock !' " 



I once saw, in a rich gallery of paintings, a 
pretty minature, in which the artist had repre- 
sented Grief, under the form of a young man, 
pale and languishing, whose reclining head seemed 
bowed down by the weighfof a wreath of Marigolds. 

Every body is familiar with this golden flower, 
which is a conventional emblem of distress of mind. 
It is distinguished by many singular properties. It 
blossoms the whole year ; and, on that account, the 
Romans termed it the flower of the calends, in 
other words, of all the months. Its flowers are 
open only from nine in the morning till three in 
the afternoon. They, however, always turn towards 
the sun, and follow his course from east to west. 
In July and August these flowers emit, during the 
night, small luminous sparks. In this point they 
resemble the nasturtium and many other flowers of 
the same colour. 


The melancholy signification of the Marigold 
may be modified in a thousand ways. Combined 
with roses, the symbol expresses the bitter sweets 
and pleasant pains of love. Alone it expresses 
grief; interwoven with other flowers, the varying 
events of life, the " mingled yarn of good and ill 
together." In the East, a bouquet of Marigolds 
and poppies expresses this thought — " I will allay 
your pain." It is more especially by such modifica- 
tions that the Language of Flowers becomes the in- 
terpretation of our thoughts. Marguerite of Orleans, 
the maternal grandmother of Henry IV., chose for 
her armorial device a Marigold turning towards the 
sun, and for the motto, ' Je ne veux suivre que lui 
seul." By this device the virtuous princess con- 
veyed the idea that all her thoughts and affections 
turned towards heaven, as the Marigold towards 
the sun. 

One of our older poets thus moralizes over this 
flower : 

When, with a serious musing, I behold 
The grateful and obsequious Marigold, 
• How duly, every morning, she displays 
Her open breast when Phoebus spreads his rays ; 
How she observes him in his daily walk 
Still bending towards turn her small slender stalk ; 


How, when he down declines, she droops and mourns, 

Bedew'd as 'twere with tears till he returns ; 

And how she veils her flowers when he is gone, 

As if she scorned to be looked upon 

By an inferior eye, or did contemn 

To wait upon a meaner light than him: 

When this I meditate, methinks the flowers 

Have spirits far more generous than ours, 

And give us fair examples to despise 

The servile fawnings and idolatries 

Wherewith we court these earthly things below, 

Which merit not the service we bestow. 





Nearlt one hundred years have run their course 
since the Mignonette first bloomed in our climes. 
It was brought from Egypt. Linneus, who gave to 
it the name of Reseda odorata, compares its perfume 
with that of ambrosia : its fragrance is stronger at 
the rising and setting of the sun than at noon. 
Mignonette flowers from the beginning of spring to 
the end of autumn ; but, by preserving it in a 
temperate green-house, its sweets may be inhaled in 
the winter season. It then becomes woody, lives 
many years, shoots up and forms with care a shrub 
of the most charming appearance. 

No gorgeous flowers the meek Reseda grace, 
Yet sip, with eager trunk, yon busy race 
Her simple cup, uor heed the dazzling gem 
That beams in Fritillaria's diadem. 



ACACIA. 157 



The Acacia is a native of North America, from 
Canada to Carolina, and it has been consecrated by 
the Indians to the genius of chaste love. Their 
bows are made of the incorruptible wood of this 
tree, and their arrows are pointed with its thorns. 
Those wild sons of the desert are susceptible of an 
attachment fraught with delicacy : they may per- 
haps be unable to give utterance to it in words, but 
they find means to express it in a branch of Acacia 
when in blossom. The Indian girl, like the city 
coquette, understands this flattering language, and 
receives, with a blush, the homage of him who has 
won her heart by his respect and love. 

It is not much more than a century since this 
ornamental tree was introduced into the gardens 
of France, from American seeds, by Robin the 
botanist, after whom this family was named Ro- 
binia. It is a large, handsome tree, of quick growth, 


beginning from the third year to convert its sap into 
perfect wood, which is of so fine a grain and so hard 
as to be substituted by turners for box in many 
kinds of light work. Its foliage, of a bright green, 
is peculiarly light and elegant. The species of 
Acacia most commonly cultivated are the Psuedo- 
Acacia, with white blossoms, and the Acacia gluti- 
nosa, so named from a clammy moisture which 
covers its branches, with rose-coloured flowers. The 
Rose Acacia is a highly ornamental shrub, with 
large bunches of pink-coloured, papilionaceous 
blossoms, whose beauty, like that of the moss- 
rose, is enhanced by the bristly covering of the 
stalk and calyx. 




Too often enervated by luxurious ease, an indo- 
lent beauty languishes the whole day, and avoids 
the cheering rays of the sun. At night, arrayed 
with all the art of coquetry, she exhibits herself to 
her admirers. The unsteady and delusive light of 
tapers, aiming her artifices, lends her a deceptive 
brilliancy, and she enchants by charms that are not 
her own. Her heart, meanwhile, is a stranger to 
love : all that she wants is slaves, victims. Impru- 
dent youth, flee from the approach of this enchant- 
ress. Nature alone is sufficient, art useless, in 
order to please and to love. She who employs the 
latter is always dangerous, perfidious. 

The flowers of the Thorn-apple, like those noc- 
turnal beauties, droop while the sun shines beneath 
their dull-looking foliage ; but, on the approach of 
night, they revive, display their charms, and unfold 
their prodigious bdh, which Nature has coloured 


with purple and lined with ivory : and to which she 
has given an odour that attracts and intoxicates, 
but is so dangerous as to stupify those who inhale it 
even in the open air. The Thorn-apple of Peru is 
the most splendid variety of this species, each 
flower being often two feet in length ; and some- 
times there are one hundred and fifty open at once 
on the tree. 

It is a dangerous plant to be allowed to grow 
where there are children, as the beauty of its flow- 
ers and fruit is liable to tempt them to their destruc- 
tion ; since it possesses so poisonous a quality as to 
produce paralysis and even madness in those who 
have inadvertently eaten of it. As a medicine, its 
leaves have been recently recommended for cough 
and asthma, dried and mixed with ordinary or herb 
tobacco for smoking. 




How many exquisite harmonics arise on every side 
of us, from the association of plants with animals ! 
The butterfly embellishes the rose, the song of birds 
enliven the groves, the bee confers a new charm on 
the flower about which it buzzes, and from which it 
extracts its sweets. Thus, throughout all Nature, the 
insect is adapted to the flower, the bird to the tree, the 
quadruped to the plant. Man alone is capable of 
discovering these connexions, and he alone has the 
power of breaking that chain of consonance and 
love by which all things in the world are bound 
together. If with eager and imprudent hand he 
attempts to remove an animal from its native home, 
thinking only of his own convenience, he usually 
forgets the plant which would have reconciled his 
new slave to this separation from his birthplace. 
If he takes away a plant, he neglects the insect 


which enlivens, the bird which embellishes it, and 
the quadruped which feeds upon its leaves and re- 
poses in its shade. 

Look at the Carolina Jasmine! With its beautiful 
foliage and scarlet flowers, it remains an alien 
among us. For our parts, we prefer to it our sweet 
native honeysuckle, to which the bee resorts to 
suck its honey, the goat to browse on its leaves, 
and flocks of thrushes, linnets, finches, and other 
small birds, to feast upon its berries. No doubt 
the rich Jasmine of Carolina would counterbalance 
all these advantages in our estimation, were we to 
see it enlivened by the humming-bird of Florida, 
which, in the vast forests of the New World, 
prefers its beautiful foliage to that of every other 
tree. " He builds his nest," says St. Pierre, " in 
one of the leaves of this plant, which he rolls up 
into the form of a cone : he finds his subsistence in 
its red flowers, resembling those of the foxglove, 
the nectareous glands of which he licks with his 
tongue ; he squeezes into them his little body, which 
looks in these flowers like an emerald set in 
coral, and sometimes gets so far that he may be 
caught in this situation." This little creature is 
the soul, the life, an essential accompaniment, of 


the plant in which he delights. When separated 

from her winged guest, this beautiful creeper 

is like a desolate widow who has lost all her 




When you bend your steps through the plain, 
or ascend the hill-side, or stand on the mountain-top, 
look down to the greensward at your feet, and you 
will percive patches of verdure, covered with golden 
flowers, or with light and transparent globes. It is 
the Dandelion, the oracle of the fields, which may 
be every where consulted. Like man, it is spread 
over the whole face of the globe ; it is found in the 
four quarters <5f the world, near the pole as beneath 
the equator, on the margin of rivers and streams as 
well as on sterile rocks : every where it offers to the 
hand that would gather, or the eye that would con- 
sult them, its flowers, which shut and open at certain 
hours, serving the solitary shepherd for a clock, 
while its feathery tufts are his barometer, predicting 
calm or storm. 

Lcontodons unfold 
On the swart turf their ray-encircled gold; 


With Sol's expanding beam the flowers unclose, 
And rising Hesper lights them to repose. 


She, enamoured of the sun, 
At his departure hangs her head and weeps. 
And shrouds her sweetness up, and keeps 

Sad vigils, like a cloistered nun, 
Till his reviving ray appears, 
Waking her beauty as he dries her tears. 


Thus in each flower and simple bell 

That in our path betrodden lie 
Are sweet remembrancers, who tell 
How fast their winged moments fly. 

Charlotte Smith. 


But the globes formed by the seeds of the Dande- 
lion serve for other purposes. Are you separated 
from the object of your love 1 — carefully pluck one 
of those feathery spheres ; charge each of the little 
feathers composing it with a tender thought ; turn 
towards the spot where the loved one dwells ; blow, 
and the little aerial travellers will faithfully convey 
your secret message to his or her feet. Do you 
wish to know if that dear one is thinking of you, 
as you are thinking of him or her, blow again ; and 
if there is left upon the stalk a single aigrette, it is a 


proof that you are not forgotten. But this second 
trial must be conducted with great caution. You 
must blow very gently ; for, at any age, even at 
that which love renders most resplendent, it is 
wrong to dispel too rudely the illusions which em- 
bellish life. 

The Dandelion attracts attention at a much 
earlier period of life. Friend Howitt speaks of 
it as 

Dandelion, with globe of down, 
The schoolboy's clock in every town, 
Which the truant puff's amain, 
To conjure lost hours back agsin. 

poppy. 167 



As these plants, or rather the juice extracted from 
them, are employed to ease pain and to procure sleep 
to the restless invalid, the red Poppy in floral lan- 
guage is made the symbol of consolation. The 
white Poppy is supposed to express " My bane, my 

According to the Grecian mythology, the Poppy 
owed its origin to Ceres, who created it to assuage 
her grief, during her search after her daughter Pro- 
serpine, who was carried off by Pluto. 

Indulgent Ceres knew my worth. 
And to adorn the teeming earth 
She bade the Poppy rise. 


Sleep bringing Pnppy, by the ploughman late, 
Not without cause, to Ceres consecrate. 

W. Bkowke. 


The largest heads of the single white Poppy are 
preferred for making opium. These, being wounded 
before they are mature, and while growing, yield a 
milky juice ; this, being collected and dried, be- 
comes opium, of which laudanum is made. Accord- 
ing to the quantity taken, laudanum operates either 
as a powerful remedy or a destructive poison. 

From a Poppy I have taken 
Mortal's balm, and mortal's bane; 
Juice that, creeping through the heart, 
Deadens every sense of smart ; 
Doomed to heal or doomed to kill, 
Fraught with good or fraught with ill. 

Mrs. Robinson. 

The Poppy has of late years been extensively cul- 
tivated in this country for the making of opium, 
which is found to be equal in all its qualities to that 
formerly imported from Turkey. The quantity an- 
nually consumed in England is about fifty thousand 
pounds. In Germany an oil is extracted from the 
seed of the Poppy, that is not inferior to the finest 
Italian oils for culinary purposes, if used within the 

Many species of Poppies are cultivated in the gar- 
den. The double ones are flowers of surpassing 

poppy. 169 

beauty, whether we consider their delicate texture, 
elegance of shape, or variety of colouring. But, in- 
dependently of the flower, the capsule, or seed-case, 
alone, of the Poppy cannot be examined without ex- 
citing the utmost admiration of the wisdom with 
which it has been formed. It is covered by a shield- 
formed stigma, or cap, thickly perforated with holes 
to admit the fecundating particles of the farina to 
the channels which are so disposed around the eleven 
cells, or chambers, of the capsule, that each seed 
receives its regular portion of this matter by means 
of an umbilical cord : though there are frequently 
six thousand of these vegetable eggs enclosed in one- 
capsule. When we consider that each of these 
minute seeds is so admirably perfect as to contain 
all the essentials necessary to form in the following 
year a plant capable of producing at least twenty 
capsules, we cannot forbear exclaiming with the 
poet : — 

How wondrous are thy ways ! 
How far above our knowledge and our praise ! 


fn the time of Gesner, the celebrated botanist of 
Switzerland, the village Damon and Chloes proved 



the sincerity of their lovers by placing in the hollow 
of the palm of the left hand a petal or flower-leaf, of 
the Poppy, which, on being struck by the other 
hand, was broken with a sharp sound, which denoted 
true attachment, but faithlessness when it failed to 

By a prophetic Poppy leaf I found 
Your changed affection, for it gave no sound, 
Though in my hand struck hollow as it lay ; 
But quickly withered, like your love, away. 

CORN. 171 


Corn is a term applied to all sorts of grain fit for 
food, particularly wheat, barley, oats, and rye. All 
of them belong to the grand division of grasses, 
which are distinguished from other plants by their 
simple, straight, unbranched stalk, hollow, and 
jointed, commonly called straw ; with loug, narrow, 
tapering leaves, placed at each joint of the stalk, and 
sheathing and enclosing it, as if by way of support. 

Ceres, the goddess of corn and harvest, was 
represented with a garland of ears of corn on her 
head, the commemoration of the loss of her daugh- 
ter Proserpine was celebrated about the beginning 
of harvest; that of her search after her at the time 
of sowing corn. 

Botanists assure us that corn is not found any 


where in its primitive state. This plant, togethei 
with the use of fire, seems to have been bestowed by 
Providence on man, in order to secure to him the 
dominion of the earth. With corn and fire, he may 
dispense with all other gifts, or rather, he may 
acquire them all. With corn alone he can feed 
all the domestic animals, which furnish him with 
subsistence or share his labours. Corn is the first 
bond of society, because its culture and preparation 
demand hard labour and mutual services. 

An Arab, having lost his way in the desert, had 
been two days without food : death by hunger 
stared him in the face. At length coming to a well 
where caravans were accustomed to halt, he per- 
ceived a small leathern bag lying on the sand. He 
picked it up. " God be praised !" said he — " 'tis a 
little flour I presume." He lost no time in untying 
it, and, at the sight of its contents, he exclaimed: 
" Unfortunate creature that I am ! it is only gold- 
dust !" 

A whole straw has been made the emblem of 
union, and a broken straw, of rupture. The custom 
of breaking a straw to express the rupture of a con- 
tract may be traced back to an early period of 
French history, and may be almost said to have had 

CORN. 173 

a royal origin. The ancient chroniclers relate that, 
in 922, Charles the Simple, finding himself aban- 
doned by the principal lords of his court, had the 
imprudence to call a meeting of the Champ de Mai 
at Soissons. There he sought friends, but found 
only factious opponents, whose audacity was in- 
creased by his weakness. Some reproached him 
with indolence, prodigality, and his blind confidence 
in his minister Haganon ; others with his disgrace- 
ful concessions to Raoul, the Norman chieftain. 
Surrounded by the seditious crowd, he had recourse 
to entreaties and promises, hoping to escape from 
them by fresh concessions, but in vain. The more 
he betrayed his weakness the bolder they grew, and 
at length they declared that he should no longer be 
their king. At these words, pronounced with vehe- 
mence, and accompanied with threats, they advanced 
to the foot of the throne, broke the straws which 
they held in their hands, dashed them to the ground, 
and retired, after declaring by this act that they thus 
broke all compacts with him. 

This is the most ancient instance of the kind on 
record ; but it proves that this method of breaking 
contracts had long been customary ; since the 


great vassals thought it unnecessary to accompany 
the act with a single word of explanation. They 
were sure of being understood, and they were so. 




This fragile beauty is made the emblem of 
coquetry, because its flower seldom lasts a second 
day ; hence the French have named it Belle de 
jour, and it has been thus characterized, by one of 
their poets : 

Aux t'eux duiit L'air euneelle 

S'ouvre la Belle de jour ; 
Zephyr la flatte de l'aille ; 
La friponne encore appelle 

Les papillons d'alentour. 

Coquettes, c'est votre embleine : 
Le grand jour, lo bruit vous plait, 

Briller est votre art supreme ; 

Sans eclat le plaisir nienie 
Devient pour vous sans attrait. 

It flowers in June, and, though the blossoms are 
so short-lived, yet they are followed by a succession 
of others, so that the plant continues to display its 
beauty, and to give out its agreeable fragrance, for a 
considerable time. 




The Sensitive Plant is so called from its motions 
imitating the sensibility of animal life. The plants 
of this genus naturally contract themselves in the 
evening, and expand with the morning's light : and 
they are still more remarkable for shrinking from 
external violence, and folding up their leaves at the 
mere approach of one's hand. 

Whence does it happen that the plant, which well 
We name the Sensitive, should move and feel 1 
Whence know her leaves to answer her command, 
And with quick horror fly the neighbouring hand ? 


These are questions which naturalists have not 
yet been able to answer. Darwin asks : " May it 
not be owing to a numbness, or paralysis, consequent 
to too violent irritation, like the fainting of animals 


from pain or fatigue?" The same writer thus cha- 
racterizes the general habits of this plant : 

Weak with nice sense, the chaste Mimosa stands, 
From each rude touch withdraws her timid hands 
Oft as light clouds o'erpass the summer's glade, 
Alarm'd she trembles at the moving shade, 
And feels, alive through all her tender form, 
The whisper'd murmurs of the gathering storm ; 
Shuts her sweet eyelids to approaching night, 
And hails with freshen'd charms the rosy light. 

Her susceptibility, however, even in the highest 
degree of excitement, never instigates her to injure 
the indiscreet hand which touches her, but only to 
draw back from it. The Sensitive Plant strives 
neither to punish nor to revenge herself. Like 
those modest females, who never think of arming 
themselves with severity, she uses not her thorny 
bristles ; she merely shrinks from the approach of 
the intruder. The violet is the emblem of that 
retiring modesty which proceeds from reflection ; 
but the Sensitive Plant is a perfect image of 
innocence and virgin modesty. She suspects no 
harm, because she knows none, and shows herself 
without mistrust : but, as soon as she is gazed at 


too closely, she withdraws herself as much as pos- 
sible from the inquisitive eye. This modesty ap- 
pears to be in her an instinct, a sense, and not the 
result of reflection. 

AUTUMN. 179 


Attemper'd suns arise, 
Sweet-beani'd and shedding oft through lucid clouds 
A pleasing calm ; while, broad and brown below, 
Extensive harvests h^ng the heavy head. 
Rich, silent, deep, they stand; for not a gale 
Rolls its light billows o'er the bending plain : 
A calm of plenty ! 


Who loves not Autumn's joyous round, 
"When corn, and wine, and oil abound? 
Yet who would choose, however gay, 
A year of unrenewed decay ? 


No spring or summer's beauty hath such grace 
As I have seen in one Autumnal face. 


Autumn tinges every fertile branch 

With blooming gold, and blushes like the morn. 



Go to the silent Autumn woods ! 

There has gone forth a spirit stern; 
Its wing has waved in triumph here, 
The spring's green tender leaf is sere, 

And withering hangs the summer fern. 

Mary Howitt. 

In our favoured country, Spring is clothed in 
a green robe enamelled with flowers, which owes 
all its ornaments to Nature. Summer, crowned 
with blue-bottles and wild poppies, proud of her 
golden harvests, receives from the hand of man 
part of her decorations ; whilst Autumn appears 
laden with fruit brought to perfection by his industry. 
Here the juicy peach is tinged with the colours of 
the rose ; the fine flavoured apricot borrows the gold 
that glows in the bosom of the ranunculus ; the 
grape decks itself with the purple of the violet ; and 
the apple with the varied hues of the gaudy tulip. 
All these fruits are so like flowers, that one would 
suppose them to have been made only to delight 
the eye: but yet they come to increase the 
abundance of our stores, and Autumn, which pours 
them upon our tables, seems to proclaim that they 
are the last gifts which Nature means to lavish 
upon us. 

But a new Flora suddenly makes her appearance, 

AUTUMN. 181 

the offspring of commerce and industry. She was 
unknown to Greece in her best days, and to our 
simple forefathers. Roving about incessantly over 
the earth, she enriches us with the productions of 
every country. She comes, and our dull and for- 
saken gardens acquire fresh splendour. The China 
aster is intermingled with the beauteous pink of 
India ; the mignonette from the banks of the Nile 
grows at the foot of the eastern tuberose : the helio- 
trope, the nasturtium and nightshade of Peru, blossom 
at the foot of the beautiful acacia of Constantinople ; 
the Persian jasmine unites with that of Carolina to 
cover our arbours and to embellish our bowers ; the 
hollyhock and the Passion flowers, also denominated 
the Jerusalem cross, which reminds us of the Cru- 
sades, raise their splendid heads beside the persicaria 
of the East ; and Autumn, which could formerly 
find nothing but ears of corn and vine-leaves to 
compose a garland for her brows, is now astonished 
to find herself crowned with such rich adornments, 
and to be enabled to mingle with them the ever- 
flowering rose of the plains of Bengal. 

Dearly do I love to observe these beautiful 
strangers, which have retained amongst us their 
native instincts and habits. 1 he sensitive plant 


shrinks from my hand, as it does from that of the 
American savage; the African marigold predicts to 
me, as to the black inhabitants of the desert, dry or 
rainy weather ; the day-lily of Portugal tells me 
that in an hour it will be noon ; and the Peruvian 
nightshade informs the timid lover that the try sting- 
hour is at hand. 



The name of this beautiful little flower, which 
enamels the banks of our rivers with its corollas of 
celestial blue, corresponds with the signification that 
is now universally attached to it. That name it 
derived from a German tradition full of melancholy 
romance. It is related that a young couple, on the 
eve of being united, whilst walking along the de- 
lightful banks of the Danube, saw a cluster of these 
lovely flowers floating on the stream, which was 
bearing it away. The affianced bride admired the 
beauty of the flower, and lamented its fatal destiny. 
The lover plunged into the water to secure it : no 
sooner had he caught it than he found himself sink- 
ing, but, making a last effort, he threw it on the 
bank at the feet of his betrothed, and, at the mo- 
ment of disappearing for ever, exclaimed Vergiss 
inein nicht ! Since that event, this flower has been 
made emblematical of the sentiment, and been dis- 
tinguished by the name of Forget-me-not. Its 


Linnean appellation is Myosotis palustris, and its 
common English name, Mouse-ear Scorpion-grass. 

It is not surprising that the Forget-me-not should 
have become a favourite with our own poets as 
well as those of Germany. In Gbthe's " Lay of 
the Imprisoned Knight," translated by Lord Francis 
Leveson Gower, are these stanzas : 

Not on the mountain's shelving side, 

Nor in the cultivated ground, 
Nor in the garden's painted pride, 

The flower I seek is found. 

Where Time on sorrow's page of gloom 

Has fixed its envious lot, 
Or swept the record from the tomb, 

It says Forget-me-not. 

And this is still the loveliest flower, 

The fairest of the fair, 
Of all that deck my lady's bower, 

Or bind her floating hair. 

It has been figured as a device on the seals of 
lovers who have sung its praises in their verses. 

To flourish in my favourite bower, 

To blossom round my cot, 
I cultivate the little flower 

They call Forget-me not. 


It springs where Avon gently flows 

In wild simplicity, 
And 'neath my cottage-window grows, 

Sacred to love and thee. 

This pretty little floweret's dye 

Of soft cerulean blue, 
Appears as if from Ellen's eye 

It had received its hue. 

Though oceans now betwixt us roar. 

Though distant be our lot, 
Ellen ! though we should meet no more, 

Sweet maid, Forget me not ! 

The Myosotis palnstris is no where found in 
greater perfection and abundance than on the bank 
of a stream near Luxemburg, which springs from 
the foot of an oak, that appears as old as the world, 
and, forming a number of little cascades, descends 
into an extensive plain. It is only the bank most 
exposed to the south that is thickly bordered by the 
Forget-me-not, and the plants hanging down seem 
to delight in looking at themselves in the chrystal 
mirror of the stream, which is called The Fairies' 
bath, or the Cascade of the Enchanted Oak. To 
this favourite spot the young females often descend 

from the ramparts of the city, on holidays, to dance 



near the brook. To see them crowned with the 
flowers that line its bank, you would take them for 
Nymphs holding their revels in honour of the Naiad 
of the Enchanted Oak. 

For some years this little flower has been culti- 
vated in France with the greatest care, and it finds 
a ready sale in the markets in Paris. Phillips 
recommends its cultivation for the same purpose in 
this country, particularly to cottagers who live near 
towns ; " as, by transplanting the trailing branches 
from their borders into small pots, they would find 
it a profitable employ to send them to market, for 
few people would withstand the temptation to pur- 
chase these interesting flowers, that carry in their 
eye the tale of Forget-me-not. 

The same writer says he has been informed that 
" the decoction or the juice of this plant has the 
peculiar property of hardening steel ; and that, if 
edge-tools of that metal be made red-hot, and then 
quenched in the juice, and this process be repeated 
several times, the steel will become so hard as to cut 
iron, and even stone, without turning the edge." 



The numerous family of radiated flowers were 
named Aster from the Greek word signifying Star. 
Our European gardens are indebted for the China 
Aster to Father d'Incarville, a Jesuit missionary, 
who, about the year 1730, sent seeds of it to the 
royal garden at Paris. At first the plants produced 
only single flowers of one uniform colour ; but, 
through cultivation and change of soil, double varie- 
ties were obtained, and so diversified in colour that 
they form one of the principal ornaments of our 
parterres from July to November ; and the China 
Aster is thence made the emblem of variety. In 
like manner, study is capable of multiplying without 
limit the graces and refinements of the uncultivated 
mind. Brilliant and majestic, the Aster does not 
pretend to rival the rose, but it succeeds her, and 
consoles us in autumn for her absence. 


It was at first supposed that the Chinese were 
acquainted only with the single purple Aster that 
was sent to France : but they possess all the varie- 
ties which we admire, and display a taste in the 
arrangement of these star-formed flowers, which 
leaves the British florists far in the back-ground. 
Even our most curious amateurs have yet to learn 
what effect these plants are capable of producing by 
their gay corollas, when carefully distributed by the 
hand of taste. 

Figure to yourself for instance a bank sloping to 
a piece of water, covered with these gay flowers, so 
arranged as to rival the richest patterns of Persian 
carpets, or the most curious figures that can be 
devised by the artist in fillagree. Imagine them 
reflected in the water, and you will have a faint idea 
of the enchanting effect produced by these brilliant 
stars in the gardens of China. 

I once attempted this kind of decoration, of which 
a celebrated traveller had talked to me a great deal, 
but failed to produce the full effect intended, owing 
to the lack of that profusion of flowers, that variety 
of shades of the same colour, and, above all, that 
admirable Chinese patience which conquers all obsta- 
cles. My little theatre, however, which was rather 


disposed in stripes than in steps, delighted all who 
beheld it ; and many were astonished, as well as 
myself, that nothing of the kind had ever yet been 
attempted for the decoration of our gardens or to set 
off our festivities. 




This superb child of the East, to which Linneus 
gave by way of eminence the epithet Polianthus, 
from two Greek words signifying a town and a 
flower, because it is generally cultivated and sold in 
towns, was first brought from Persia to France in 
1632. It was then but single, and double flowers 
were not produced till long afterwards by a skilful 
florist of Leyden, named Lecour. It has since 
spread over all the world. In Russia, indeed, it 
flowers only for sovereigns and the great ; but it 
has become naturalized in Peru, where it grows 
without culture, and unites with the glowing 
nasturtium to adorn the bosom of the American 

The flower of the Tuberose, which grows on the 
top of a very tall, slender stem, is of a white colour, 
sometimes tinged with a blush of pink. Its perfume 
is delicious, rich, and powerful. If you would 


enjoy it without danger, keep at some distance from 
the plant. To increase tenfold the pleasure which 
it affords, come with the object of your affection to 
inhale its perfume by moonlight, when the night- 
ingale is pouring forth his soul in song. 

The Tuberose, with her silvery light, 

That in the gardens of Malay 
Is call'd the mistress of the night, 
So like a bride, scented and bright, 

She comes out when the sun's away. 


Then, by a secret virtue, these grateful odours 
will add an inexpressible charm to your enjoyment ; 
but, if regardless of the precepts of moderation, you 
will approach too near, this divine flower will then 
be but a dangerous enchantress, which will pour 
into your bosom a deadly poison. Thus the love 
which descends from heaven purifies and exalts the 
delights of a chaste passion ; but that which springs 
from the earth proves the bane and the destruction 
of imprudent youth. • 




This flower has been confounded with the sun- 
flower, though it is of a different genus, and totally 
unlike the latter. To both has been ascribed the 
property of turning towards the sun, and following 
his course round the horizon ; a property not con- 
fined to these flowers, as there are others that do 
the same in a greater or less degree. 

The blossoms of the Heliotrope form clusters of 
very small, delicate, fragrant flowers, generally of a 
faint purple colour, or white, sometimes red, and 
bluish white. It is, as its name implies, a native 
of Peru, where it was discovered by the celebrated 
Jussieu. While botanizing one day in the Cordil- 
leras, he suddenly found himself overpowered by 
an intoxicating perfume. He looked around, ex- 
pecting to find some gaudy flower or other from 
which it proceeded, but could perceive nothing but 


some handsome bushes, of a light green, the extre- 
mities of whose sprays were tipped with flowers of 
a faint blue colour. He went up to these bushes, 
which were about six feet high, and saw that the 
flowers which they bore were all turned towards 
the sun. Struck with this peculiarity, the learned 
botanist gave to the plant the name of Heliotrope, 
and, collecting some of its seeds, he sent them to 
the royal garden at Paris, where the Heliotrope 
was first cultivated in 1740. It has since spread 
to all the countries of Europe, and, though there is 
nothing striking in its appearance, it has become a 
general favourite with the fair sex. 

An anonymous poet has drawn from this flower 
a signification, the very reverse of that which we 
have attached to it : 

There is a flower, whose modest eye 
Is turned with looks of light and love, 

Who breathes her softest, sweetest sigh, 
Whene'er the sun is bright above. 

Let clouds obscure, or darkness veil, 

Her fond idolatry is fled; 
Her sighs no more their sweets exhale 

The loving eye is cold and dead. 


Canst thou not trace a moral here, 
False flatterer of the prosperous hour? 

Let but an adverse cloud appear, 
And thou art faithless as the flow'r. 

ytfti /ft* ,:,///, ^s/,. ,;',-/,...„,./ ,,,,// /,„/.^. /.,/,,,/. 




The Sunflower has been thus named from the re- 
semblance which its broad golden disk and surround- 
ing rays bear to the sun. On this account it was 
used in its native country by the Peruvians, who wor- 
shipped that luminary — the virgins who officiated in 
the Temple of the Sun being crowned with Sun- 
flowers of pure gold, wearing them also at their 
bosoms, and carrying them in their hands. These 
golden flowers, reflecting the rays of their deity, 
formed a scene of dazzling brilliancy. The first 
Spaniards who arrived in Peru were amazed at this 
profuse display of gold, but they were still more 
astonished when in May they beheld whole fields 
covered with these flowers, which they concluded at 
first sight to be composed of the same precious metal. 

The Sunflower has been made the emblem of false 



wealth, because gold, however abundant, cannot of 
itself render a person truly rich. It is related that 
Pythes, a rich Lydian, the owner of several gold- 
mines, neglected the cultivation of his lands, which 
naturally became so unproductive as not to afford the 
necessaries of life. His wife, who proved herself 
possessed of as much good sense as wit, at a supper 
which Pythes had ordered her to prepare, caused all 
the dishes to be filled with representations of the 
different viands in gold. On the removal of the 
covers, she said to the guests : " I set before you 
such fare as we have ; for we cannot reap what we 
do not sow." This lesson made a due impression 
on the mind of Pythes, who acknowledged that Pro- 
vidence distributes its gifts like an affectionate mo- 
ther, who has a love for all her offspring, however 

The French call this flower Tournesol as well as 
Soleil, from a vulgar error that the blossoms turn to 
the sun. The fact is, that the flowers branch out on 
all sides of the plant, and those which face the east 
at the opening of day never turn to the west at the 
close of it. Many of our poets, however, have 
adopted the popular notion that this flower regularly 
turns to the sun : 


But one, the lofty follower of the sun, 
Sad when he sets, shuts up her yellow leaves, 
Drooping all night, and, when he warm returns, 
Toinls her enamour'd bosom to his ray. 


Moore, in his Irish Melodies, introduces the same 
notion : 

As the sunflower turns to her god, when he sets, 
The same look which she turn'd when he rose. 

Darwin also says of the Sunflower, that it 

Climbs the upland lawn, 
And bows in homage to the rising dawn, 
Imbibes with eagle eye the golden ray, 
And watches, as it moves, the orb of day. 

Uplift, proud Sunflower, to thy favourite orb, 
That disk whereon his brightness seems to dwell, 

And, as thou seem'st his radiance to absorb, 
Proclaim thyself the garden's sentinel. 


This notion is, no doubt, derived from the classic 
legend of the nymph Clytia, who was beloved by 
Helios. When, however, he transferred his affec- 
tions to Leucothoe the daughter of King Orchamus, 


the jealous Clytia communicated the affair to the 
father, who cruelly put his daughter to death. 
Helios was so indignant at the conduct of Clytia, 
that he could not forgive her, and wholly withdrew 
his affections. Overwhelmed with grief, she threw 
herself on the ground, and there lay for nine days and 
nights without taking any sustenance, and her eyes 
fixed on the sun, the type of her lover. At length, 
the gods, moved with compassion by her sorrow and 
contrition, transformed her into a Sunflower, which 
was believed constantly to turn its face towards the 
sun, as if to imbibe life and warmth from his rays. 

In its native country, Peru and Mexico, the Sun- 
flower is said to grow to the height of twenty feet or 
more, and to produce flowers about two feet in dia- 
meter. Gerard, the first English writer who notices 
this plant, which he calls " The Flower of the Sunne, 
or the Marigolde of Peru," tells us that he had 
grown it in his garden at Holborn to the height of 
fourteen feet, and producing flowers that measured 
sixteen inches over. 

It has been ascertained that a single Sunflower 
may produce upwards of two thousand seeds. These 
seeds when pealed have a taste similar to that of 
sweet almonds, and they are excellent food for fat- 


tening domestic poultry. In the United States of 
America, the Sunflower is cultivated on a large scale, 
for the purpose of making from the seeds an oil that 
is good-tasted, and fit for salads and all the purposes 
for which olive-oil is used. Hence it is evident that 
the Sunflower might with as much justice have been 
made the emblem of true as of false riches. 




Tin: towering height of this majestic plant ren- 
ders it an appropriate emblem of ambition. It is a 
native of the East Indies, China, Siberia, and Africa. 
From the French name, Rose de Damas, or Rose 
d'Outremer, it is surmised that the Hollyhock was 
first brought to Europe from Syria at the time of 
the Crusades. 

We have few flowers that contribute more to the 
embellishment of large gardens than the Hollyhock, 
whose noble stems appear like so many banners 
garnished with roses of every variety of colour, from 
the palest blush to the deepest carmine, and from a 
faint white, through every shade of yellow, to the 
richest orange, from which the colour is carried on 
to a dark chestnut. Others are dyed of a reddish 
purple, deepening to black. These give gaiety to 
the shrubbery till a late season of the year, throwing 
out a succession of flowers till the arrival of frost. 


Phillips, in his "Flora Historica," indulges in 
the following pleasing speculation respecting this 
flower : — " When the children of the lower classes 
of society have become more civilized, and their 
parents sufficiently enlightened to instruct them in 
their duty, so that their amusement may not consist 
in idly destroying what cannot benefit them, but 
materially injures their more polished neighbours, 
the Hollyhock will be planted in the hedges of our 
fields, and the whole appearance of the country be 
much improved by relieving the uniformity of the 
generality of fences. Considerable benefit would 
at the same time be received by those cottagers who 
have the prudence to give attention to the hive ; since 
the late season at which the Hollyhock flowers gives 
the bees an opportunity to make a second season for 
collecting their sweets." 

From the nectaries of Hollyhocks 

The humble bee, e'en till he faints, will sip. 

H. Smith. 

It is now known that the Hollyhock may be em- 
ployed for other economical purposes besides the 
feeding of bees. It has been ascertained that good 
strong cloth may be made from the fibrous bark of 


its flower-stalks. In 1821, two hundred and eighty 
acres of land, near Flint, in Wales, were planted 
with the common Hollyhock for this manufacture : 
in the process of which it was discovered that the 
plant yields a fine blue dye, equal in beauty and 
permanence to the best indigo. 



Up to the present day, botanists have in vain 
studied this plant, which seems to conceal from the 
most searching examination the secret of its flowers 
and seed, confiding to Zephyr alone the invisible 
germs of its young family. That deity selects a 
spot for the cradle of its offspring. Sometimes he 
delights to form with its long tresses the dark veil 
hung before some cavern, in which the solitary 
Naiad has slept ever since the beginning of ages ; 
at others, bearing them on his wings, he fixes them 
like verdant stars on the top of the towers of some 
old castle, or, disposing them in light festoons, he 
adorns with them the cool and shady spots which 
the herdsman loves. Thus this species of fern, which 
baffles the researches of Science, and conceals its 
origin from the most piercing eyes, does not with- 
hold its benefits from those who solicit them. 




When the leaves begin to fall from the trees, a 
flower resembling the crocus springs up amidst the 
grass of the damp meadows : but, instead of being, 
like a crocus, the harbinger of joy and hope, it pro- 
claims to all Nature that the bright days of summer 
are over. This flower is the Meadow Saffron, or 
Colchicum autumnalc, supposed to be so named 
from Colchis, in Asia, where it is said to grow in 

According to fabulous history, this autumnal 
flower owes its origin to some drops of the magic 
liquor, prepared by Medea to restore the aged ^Eson 
to the bloom and vigor of youth, which were spilt 
in the fields. 

The foaming juices now the brink o'erswell : 
The barren heath, where'er the liquor fell 
Sprang out with vernal grass, and all the pride 
Of blooming May. 

Tate's Ovid. 


In such a night 
Medea gathered the enchanted herbs 
That did renew old iEson. 


It had been suggested also that, as Medea is 
sometimes called Colchis, it was this plant that 
relieved ^Eson from his infirmities. Hence it came 
to be considered as a preservative against all sorts of 
diseases. The Swiss hang it round their children's 
necks, and imagine them to be thenceforth exempt 
from every kind of ailment. 

Most superstitious notions, however, ridiculous as 
they may now appear, originated in the first in- 
stance in some reasonable opinion. Could we 
divest the tales of antiquity of their fabulous dress, 
we should probably find them all explanatory of 
real events. In this case, wc should perhaps disco- 
ver that Medea, having relieved ^Eson from a fit of 
the gout, his subjects celebrated her praise for 
having restored their sovereign to youthful spright- 
liness. This interpretation is rendered the more 
plausible by the late discovery of the powerful 
efficacy of the Colchicum, not only in gout and 
rheumatic affections of the joints, but also in most 
inflammatory disorders. In many cases, however, 


it has produced injurious effects ; so that, as a medi- 
cine, it ought not to be administered but by the 
most cautious practitioners ; for the Colchicum is 
undoubtedly a poisonous root, and its deleterious 
effects are to be dreaded until the precise dose 
is accurately ascertained. 

The poisonous quality of this plant seems to be 
known as it were by instinct to all kinds of cattle. 
They all shun it, and it is no uncommon thing to 
see it standing alone in pastures, where every other 
kind of herbage has been eaten down, without a 
leaf of this plant being touched. 

The Meadow Saffron cannot but interest the 
botanist on account of the singular phenomena 
which it exhibits. Its corolla, six-cleft, of a violet 
colour, has neither leaves nor stem : a long tube, 
white as ivory, which is but a prolongation of the 
flower, is its sole support. At the bottom of this 
tube Nature has placed the seed, which is not 
destined to ripen before the following spring. The 
seed-vessel which encloses it is buried in the turf 
during the winter ; but, on the return of spring, it 
rises from the ground, waving in the sunshine, 
surrounded by a tuft of broad leaves of the brightest 
green. The seeds ripen in May. Thus this plant, 


reversing the accustomed order of the seasons, 
mingles its fruit with the flowers of spring, and 
its flowers with the fruits of autumn. 

Then bright from earth, amid the troubled sky, 
Ascends fair Colchicum, with radiant eye, 
Warms the cold bosom of the hoary year, 
And lights with beauty's blaze the dusky sphere. 





Although this plant is a native of Italy, it re- 
mained unknown until the present century, when 
M. Villan, a skilful botanist of Grenoble, was at- 
tracted by its delightful fragrance at the foot of 
Mount Pilatus, in Switzerland, whence he brought 
it to perfume the winter gardens of our continental 
neighbors. It cast its first odour on the British 
shore in 1806, and it has become so far naturalized 
to our climate as to discharge its fragrance over our 
walks in winter, as freely as the mignonette of Egypt 
does in summer. 

Thus genius, hidden beneath a modest exterior, is 
not discerned by the vulgar ; but if it once meets 
the eye of an enlightened judge, its powers are re- 
vealed, and it commands the admiration of those 
who, with stupid indifference, perceived in it nothing 
extraordinary. A young miller in Holland having 
a taste for painting, exerci&ed it at leisure hours in 
portraying the scenery amidst which he lived. His 


master's mill and cattle, an admirable verdure, the 
effects of the sky, clouds, vapour, light and shade, 
were transferred- with exquisite truth to the canvas 
by his untutored pencil. No sooner had he finished 
one picture than he carried it to the colourman and 
exchanged it for materials to paint another. It hap- 
pened that the innkeeper of the place, expecting 
company at his house, wished to decorate the apart- 
ment destined for their reception, and bought two of 
the pictures for that purpose. An eminent painter* 
chancing to stop at the inn, admired the truth of 
these landscapes, offered one hundred florins for 
what had cost but a crown, and, on paying for them, 
promised to take all the works of the young miller 
at the same price. Thus was the reputation of the 
latter established and his fortune made. In his pros- 
perity, he never forgot his dear mill, the figure of 
which is to be found in all his pictures, which are 
so many master-pieces. Who would imagine that 
plants, like men, need a patron in order that their 
merits may be duly appreciated ! 





Madame de Stael was always angry whenever 
any of her acquaintance attempted to introduce a 
stupid person into her company. One day, one of 
her friends ventured, nevertheless, to bring to her a 
young Swiss officer of the most prepossessing ex- 
terior. The lady, pleased with his appearance, was 
very lively, and said a thousand flattering things to 
the new-comer, who seemed at first to be struck 
mute by surprise and admiration. When, however, 
he had listened to her above an hour without open- 
ing his lips, she began to suspect the cause of his 
silence, and put to him such direct questions that he 
could not help answering. Alas, for the visiter ! 
his answers were extremely silly ! Madame de 
Stael, vexed at having thrown away her time and 
her wit, turned to her friend and said : " Indeed, sir, 
you are like my gardener, who thought to do me a 


pleasure by bringing me this morning a pot of Ge- 
ranium : but I can tell you that I made him take 
back the flower ; desiring him not to let me see it 
any more." " And why so 1" asked the young 
man in astonishment. " It was, since you wish to 
know, because the Geranium is a beautiful scarlet 
flower; while you look at it, it pleases the eye ; but, 
when you press it ever so slightly, it gives out a dis- 
agreeable smell." With these words, Madame de 
Stael rose and went out of the room, leaving, you 
may be sure, the cheeks of the young fool as red as 
his coat or the flower to which he had just been 

Among the cultivated varieties of the Geranium, 
there are, however, some which have a very agree- 
able scent, and whose flowers exhibit many diver- 
sities of colour. It is also found in a wild state 
under the names of Crane's Bill and Herb Robert. 
The following poetic tribute has been paid to it by 
the latter appellation : — 

I will not sing the mossy rose, 

The jasmine sweet, or lily fair. 
The tints the rich carnation shows, 

The stock's sweet scent that fills the air. 


Full many a bard has sung their praise 
In metres smooth, and polished line ; 

A simple flower and humbler lays 
May best befit a pen like mine. 

There is a small but lovely flower, 
With crimson star and calyx brown, 

On pathway side, beneath the bower, 
By Nature's hand profusely strown. 

Inquire you when this flow'ret springs ?— 
When Nature wakes to mirth and love. 

When all her fragrance summer flings. 
When latest autumn chills the grove. 

Like the sweet bird whose name it bears, 
'Midst falling leaves and fading flowers, 

The passing traveller it cheers, 
In shortened days and darksome hours. 

And, should you ask me where it blows, 
I answer, on the mountain's bare, 

High on the tufted rock it grows, 
In lonely glens or meadows fair. 

It blooms amidst those flowery dales 
Where winding Aire pursues its course; 

It smiles upon the craggy fells 
That rise around its lofty source. 


There are its rosy petals shown, 

'Midst curious forms and mosses rare, 
Imbedded in the dark gray stone, 

When not another flower is there. 

Oh ! emblem of that steadfast mind, 
Which, through the varying scenes of life, 

By genuine piety refined, 
Holds on its way 'midst noise and strife. 

Though dark the impending tempest lour, 

The path of duty it espies. 
Calm 'midst the whirlwind and the shower, 

Thankful when brishter hours arise. 

Oh! could our darkened minds discern 
In thy sweet form this lesson plain, 

Could we it practically learn, 
Herb Robert would not bloom in vain. 

At Rome, the leaf of the Geranium is employed 
in a favourite game or amusement, which is called 
Far il Verde. The time chosen for it is the begin- 
ning of spring, when the trees and the fields put on 
their new liveries. A gentleman and lady then 
agree upon a Verde, and determine the duration of 
the game and the forfeits to be paid. Both parties 
have now to take care that they are constantly pro- 


vided, both at home and abroad, with a fresh Gera- 
nium leaf. On meeting one another, the question 
is Avede il Verde? succeeded by the challenge, 
Fatte vadere il Verde, or Fatte il Verde. The 
person so addressed must immediately show the 
Geranium leaf, and, as a sign that it is fresh, rub it 
against a wall or anything upon which it can leave 
a mark. If it fails to make a green spot, or if the 
party has left it at home, he must either pay the 
specified penalty or pledge himself to do so. Thus, 
too, this engagement gives each a right to enter 
without ceremony the apartment of the other, to rub 
his green leaf against the wall, and to put his play- 
mate to the same test. The game generally lasts for 
some weeks, and is more common among the higher 
classes than the lower. It presupposes an intimate 
acquaintance between the parties, or is designed to 
produce one. An engagement of this kind, there- 
fore, cannot well be concluded with an unmarried 
lady without the consent of her parents, and, as it is 
often a prelude to marriage, it is not decorous for a 
single lady to offer the challenge. The penalties 
are determined by the more or less intimate footing 
upon which the parties stand ; in some cases they 
are kisses, in others sweetmeats or sonnets. Some- 


times, the person who has most pledges to redeem 
gives, at the conclusion of the game a ball or supper. 
The progress of the game furnishes occasion for 
many a sly trick ; one of the parties secretly stealing 
the other's leaf, and then demanding proof that he 
has it ; and sometimes also it is purposely dropped, 
when the penalty to be paid is not too severe. 




The Cypress is an emblem of mourning. 


According to Ovid, the Cypress derived its name 
from Cyprissos, an especial friend of Apollo's, who, 
in grief at having inadvertently killed a favourite 
stag of his, prayed the gods that his mourning might 
be made perpetual, and was changed into a Cypress 
tree, the branches of which were thenceforth used at 

Wherever these trees meet our view, their doleful 
look excites melancholy ideas. Their tall pyra- 
mids, pointed to the sky, moan when shaken by 
the wind. The sun's ray cannot penetrate through 
their gloom, and when his last beams throw their 
long shadows upon the ground, you will almost 
take them for dark phantoms. Sometimes the Cy- 
press raises its head among the flowery tenants of 


our shrubberies like those representations of death 
which the Romans were accustomed to show to 
their guests even amid the transports of boisterous 

The ancients consecrated the Cypress to the 
Fates, the Furies, and Pluto. They placed it near 
tombs. The people of the East have retained 
the same custom. Their cemeteries are not scenes 
of desolation and neglect. Covered with trees and 
flowers, they are places of public resort, which are 
continually bringing together the living and the 
dead. The favourite tree for burial-grounds is the 
Cypress, which the Turks plant not only at the 
head and foot, but also upon the graves of deceased 
friends. Such, indeed, is their reverence for the 
dead, that they frequent the cemeteries more than 
the mosques themselves, for the purpose of prayer 
and religious meditation. There are many pious 
Mussulmans who do not suffer a day to pass without 
praying at the grave of their parents, children, rela- 
tives or friends. You may see at every hour of the 
day and even of the night some person or other 
either watering or planting fragrant shrubs and 
flowers in these abodes of peace. 

The common European evergreen Cypress is 


a very long-lived tree, and attains to a great size. 
According to Pliny, there were Cypress trees 
growing in his time at Rome, which were more 
ancient than the city itself. Bartholdy makes 
mention of one at Misitra, which was thirty feet in 
circumference. The American species, one of the 
largest trees in the United States, is sometimes found 
of the same girth, and seventy feet high : its branches 
extend almost horizontally. 

The wood of the Cypress is remarkable for its 
durability. Many of the chests containing the 
Egyptian mummies are of this material, affording 
a decisive proof of its almost imperishable nature. 
We are further assured that the gates of St 
Paul's church at Rome, made of Cypress wood, 
which had lasted from the time of Constnntine, 
eleven hundred years, were as fresh as new when 
Pope Eugenius IV. ordered gates of brass to be 
erected in their stead. 




This beautiful plant was first brought to Spain 
from Peru, and received its name from the won- 
derful diversity of colours in the flowers on the 
same root, 

Changing from the splendid rose 
To the pale violet's dejected hue. 


The French call it Belle de Wirit, because its flow- 
ers, apparently too timid to expand, even to a 
European meridian sun, open and give out their 
fragrance at night only. 

The Marvel of Peru retains its beauty for a great 
length of time, being frequently covered with blos- 
soms from the beginning of July to the end of October, 
and the flowers are so numerous that the plants have 
a most cheerful appearance, particularly towards 
evening, as they rarely expand in warm weather 


before the hour of four in the afternoon, on which 
account it is sometimes called Four o'clock Flower. 
But, when the weather is moderately cool and the 
sun obscured, these shy blossoms remain open the 
whole day. 

Philips remarks that, however these timid flowers 
may appear in the presence of the god of day, they 
stand the blaze of the strongest artificial light as 
cheerfully as other belles who delight to shine at the 
same hour with this emblem of timidity. 

We cannot resist the temptation of quoting here 
an exquisite little poem by Mrs. Hemans, on " Night- 
scented Flowers," which originally appeared in the 
Forget Me Not. 

"Call back your odours, lovely flowers, 
From the night-wind call them back ; 
And fold your leaves till the laughing hours 
Come forth in the sunbeam's track. 

" The lark lies couched in the grass-y not, 
And the honey-bee is gone ; 
And all bright things are away to rest- 
Why watch ye here alone ?" 

" Nay, let our shadowy beauty bloom. 
When the stars give quiet light ; 
And let us offer our faint perfume 
On the silent shrine' nf night. 


1 Call it not wasted the scent we lend 
To the breeze when no step is nigh : 

Oh ! thus for ever the earth should send 
Her grateful breath on high ! 

' And love us as emblems, night's dewy flowers, 

Of hopes unto sorrows given, 
That spring through the gloom of the darkest hours, 

Looking alone to heaven. 



The ancients believed that the Oak, coeval with 
the earth, afforded food and shelter to the first of 
men. In the remotest antiquity, it was the symbol 
of majesty and strength, and, as such, sacred to 
Jupiter, whom it sheltered at his birth, on Mount 
Lyces in Arcadia. 

Among the Greeks, the Oak performed an im- 
portant part in their religious ceremonies. The 
oaks in the grove of Dodona in Epirus, near the 
magnificent Temple of Jupiter, gave forth the oracles 
which were there promulgated by the priestesses. 
On the banks of the Achelous grew those Oaks 
whose acorns were the first food of mortals. The 
Dodonean Jupiter, the Fates, and Hecate, were 
crowned with Oak-wreaths, and the heroes who 
sailed in the Argo chose for the mast of that vessel 
an Oak from the sacred grove of Dodona, which 
continued to counsel the adventurers by oracular 

oak. 223 

intimations. As the oak was an object of such re- 
verence, it is no wonder that the gods, who were 
entertained by Philemon (See the Linden Tree), 
conceived that they could not confer on him a more 
suitable recompense than to transform him into 
an Oak-tree, that was to overshadow the temple of 
Jupiter, into which his hut was changed. Hence 
this tree became the emblem of hospitality. 

Among the Romans, various kinds of crowns 
were given as rewards of military achievements. 
The most honourable of these, a wreath of green 
Oak, called the civic crown, was allotted to him 
who had saved the life of a Roman citizen in 
battle. It was also decreed to Cicero for detecting 
Cataline's conspiracy. Scipio Africanus refused 
the civic crown for saving the life of his father at 
the battle of Trebia, on the ground that the act 
carried with it its own reward. The possessor of 
such a crown had a right to wear it constantly ; 
when he entered an assembly, all present, senators 
themselves not excepted were obliged to rise ; and 
he was exempt from every kind of civil burdens and 

Divine honours were paid to the Oak by the 
ancient Germans and Celts, who worshipped under 


its form their god Teut. Their priests, the Druids, 
offered sacrifices beneath it; their victims were 
crowned with Oak-leaves, and it was requisite that 
the piles of wood on which they were burned should 
be lighted with brands of Oak. 

By modern Britain the Oak, as furnishing the 
material of which our fleets are constructed, has 
justly been adopted as the emblem of her naval 
power — that power of which the first of our living 
poets proudly says : — 

Britannia needs no bulwark*, 

No towers along the steep ; 
Her march is on the mountain wave, 

Her home is on the deep. 

Though our dusky forests are no longer the 
haunts of Hamadryads and fairies, still the aspect 
of a majestic Oak excites admiration and awe. 
When, in youthful vigour, it rears its proud head 
and spreads its immense arms, it looks like a pro- 
tector, like a king. Shattered by the thunderbolt, 
stripped of its foliage, and motionless, it resembles 
an old man who has lived past his time, and who 
takes no interest in the pains and pleasures of the 
present age. The stormy winds sometimes strive 

oak. 225 

for the mastery over this monarch of the forest : at 
first he murmurs only, but soon a dull, deep, melan- 
choly sound issues from his sturdy branches. You 
listen and fancy that you hear an indistinct, myste- 
rious voice speaking from the tree ; which furnishes 
a clew to the ancient superstitions that prevailed 
respecting it. 




The unfading nature of this flower has caused it 
to be made the emblem of immortality. It is men- 
tioned by Milton as forming the diadem of the 
angels : — 

With solemn adoration down they cast 

Their crowns, inwove with amaranth and gold — 

Immortal Amaranth, a flower which once 

In Paradise, fast by the tree of life, 

Began to bloom, but soon, for man's offence, 

To heaven removed, where first it grew, there grows 

And flowers aloft, shading the font of life, 

And where the river of bliss, through midst of heaven 

Rolls o'er Elysian flowers her amber stream ; 

With these that never fade the spirits elect 

Bind their resplendent locks, inwrealh'd with beams. 

The Amaranth has also been placed among 
funeral flowers. Homer describes the Thessalians 
as wearing crowns of Amaranth at the funeral of 


Sad Amaranthus, in whose purple gore 
Meseems I see Amintas' wretched fate, 
To whom sweet poets' verse hath given endless date. 


Milton, too, in his Lycidas, blesses it among the 
flowers " that sad embroidery wear ;" 

Bid Amaranthus all his beauty shed, 

And daffodillies fill their cups with tears, 

To strew the laureate hearse where Lycid lies. 

In modern times, the amaranth has given its 
name to an order instituted by Queen Christina of 
Sweden, in the year 1633, at an entertainment 
given in honour of Don Antonio Pimental, the 
Spanish Ambassador. On this occasion she ap- 
peared in a dress covered with diamonds, attended 
by a suite of sixteen nobles of her court and the 
same number of ladies. At the conclusion of the 
ball, she stripped herself of the diamonds and dis- 
tributed them among the company, at the same time 
presenting the new order of knighthood, consisting 
of a ribbon and medal, with an Amaranth in 
enamel, encircled with the motto : " Dolce nella me- 


In the Floral games at Toulouse, the principal 
prize was a golden Amaranth for the best lyric 

The species of Amaranth called Tricolor, a native 
of the East Indies, is admired on account of the 
variegated colours of its leaves, resembling, as 
Gerard tells us, the splendid feathers of a parrot, 
with its stripes of red, yellow, white, green, &c. 
The Amaranthus hypocondriachus, one of the 
American species, is better known by the name of 
Prince's Feather. The leaves of most of the species 
of this plant are used in hot countries as culinary 
vegetables ; but they are not equal to the spinach, 
which they somewhat resemble. 




Parsley was held in high repute by the Greeks. 
At banquets they bound their brows with its slight 
sprigs, and also adorned with them the graves of their 
deceased relatives. In the Isthmian games at Rome 
the victors were crowned with Parsley. It was 
formerly imagined that this plant came originally 
from Sardinia, because that Island is represented on 
ancient medals as a female, beside whom is a vase 
containing a bunch of Parsley ; but it is in fact a 
native of all the damp and shady spots in Greece, 
and even of the southern provinces of France. 

From the beautiful green of this plant, it forms an 
elegant decoration to the dishes which are garnished 
with it. It adds a luxury to the poor man's soup- 
kettle, and contributes to the elegance of the most 
splendid dinners. A branch of laurel and a Parsley 


crown are the attributes which would now-a-days 
suit the god of banquets. These plants have been 
employed for nobler purposes ; but, in the age of 
gastronomy, it will not do to insist too strongly on 
what was done in the heroic ages. 

WINTER. 231 


And welcome art thou, melancholy time, 
That now surround'st my dwelling— with the sound 

Of winds that rush in darkness— the sublime 
Roar of drear woods. 

W. Howitt. 

No mark of vegetable life is seen. 

No bird to bird repeats his tuneful call, 
Save the dark leaves of some rude evergreen, 

Save the lone redbreast on the moss-grown wall. 


A wreath for merry Christmas quickly twine, 
A wreath for the bright and sparkling wine. 
Though roses are dead, 
And their bloom is fled, 
Yet for Christmas a bonnie bonnie wreath we'll twine, 
Away to the wood where the bright holly grows, 
And its red berries blush amid winter snows ; 
Away to the ruin where the green ivy clings, 
And around the dark fane its verdure flings ; 
Hey for the ivy and holly so bright, 
They are the garlands for Christmas night ! 

Louisa Anne Twamlev 




Winter comes on. The trees, after being strip- 
ped of their fruit, have now lost their leaves. The 
sun, as he recedes from us, throws dun or melan- 
choly tints over the foliage. The poplar is covered 
with a pale gold colour, while the acacia rolls up its 
light folioles, which the sun's rays will no more ex- 
pand : the birch droops its long hair, already de- 
prived of ornaments ; and the fir, which is destined 
to retain its green pyramid, waves it proudly in the 
air. The Oak stands immoveable : he defies the 
utmost efforts of the wind, which cannot strip his 
stately head of its honours ; and it is only to Spring 
that the monarch of the woods will yield his leaves 
reddened by Winter. 

All these trees might be supposed to be moved by 
different passions ; one bows profoundly as if to pay 
homage to its neighbor, whom the tempest cannot 
bend ; another seems to be striving to embrace its 


companion, the supporter of its weakness, and, while 
their branches are commingled, a third dashes about 
in every direction, as if it were surrounded by ene- 
mies. Respect, friendship, hate, anger, seem to be 
alternately communicated by one to another. Thus 
shaken by all the winds, and, as if agitated by all the 
passions, they utter long moans, resembling the con- 
fused murmurs of an alarmed people. There is no 
predominant voice ; they are low, deep, monotonous 
sounds, which throw the mind into a vague reverie. 
Showers of dead leaves frequently fall upon the 
ground, deprived of its verdure, and cover the earth 
with a moving garment. The eye cannot help watch- 
ing how the winds pursue, scatter, whirl, and drive 
hither and thither these sad remains of a spring that 
will never return. 




The Aloe is attached to the soil by very feeble 
roots ; it delights to grow in the wilderness ; its taste 
is extremely bitter. Thus grief detaches us from the 
earth, separates us from the world, and fills our hearts 
with bitterness. These plants live almost entirely 
on air, and assume singular and grotesque shapes. 
Le Vaillant found several species in great profusion 
in the deserts of the Namaquas, in South Africa. 
Some had leaves six feet long : they are thick and 
armed with long spines : from the centre of these 
leaves shoots up a slender stem as tall as a tree, and 
covered with flowers. Others are marbled, and look 
like snakes creeping upon the ground. Brydone 
saw the ancient city of Syracuse overgrown with 
large Aloes in blossom ; their elegant stems gave to 
the promontory on which it stands the appearance of 
an enchanted wood. These magnificent and mon- 
strous plants have been given to barbarous Africa : 

ALOE. 235 

they grow upon rocks, in dry sand, amidst a burn- 
ing atmosphere, breathed by lions and tigers. Let 
us be thankful to a bounteous Nature, who in our 
mild climate has every where raised bowers of ver- 
dure over our heads, and spread carpets of daisies, 
primroses, and violets, under our feet ! 




Fhiexdship has sometimes chosen for its device 
a fallen tree firmly embraced by the verdant arms of 
the Ivy, with this motto : " Nothing can part us." . 
In Greece the altar of Hymen was encircled with 
Ivy, and a branch of it presented to the new-married 
couple, as a symbol of the indissoluble knot. It 
was sacred to Bacchus, who is represented crowned 
with Ivy-leaves, as well as those of the vine. It 
formed the crown of the Greek and Roman poets ; 
and, in modern times, woman's love, constancy, and 
dependence, have been expressed by it. 

Ingratitude has been sometimes represented by 
the Ivy strangling its supporting benefactor. This 
calumny has been repelled by the author of the 
" Studies of Nature," who regards it as the model of 
pure friendship. u Nothing," says he, " can separate 
it from the tree which it has once embraced: it 
clothes it with its own leaves in that inclement 

ivy. 237 

season when its dark boughs are covered with hoar- 
frost. The faithful companion of its destiny, it falls 
when the tree is cut down ; death itself does not 
relax its grasp, and it continues to adorn with its 
verdure the dry trunk which once supported it." 

These ideas, equally refined and pathetic, have 
the additional merit of truth. The Ivy is attached 
to the earth by its own roots, and derives no nourish- 
ment from the substances to which it clings. The 
protector of ruins, it adorns the dilapidated walls 
which it holds together : it will not accept every 
kind of support, but its attachments end only with 
its life. 




The Misletoe is a creeping plant, which grows on 
the tops of the tallest trees. The proud oak is its 
slave, and nourishes it with his own substance. 
The Druids paid a kind of adoration to it as the 
emblem of a weakness that was superior to 
strength : they regarded the tyrant of the oak as 
equally formidable to men and gods. This opinion 
was founded on the following fable of their my- 

One day, Balder told his mother Friga that he 
dreamt he was dying. Friga charmed fire, metals, 
diseases, water, and animals, that they might not 
have power to harm her son ; and her spells were 
so powerful that nothing could resist them, Balder, 
therefore, mingled fearlessly in the battles of the 


gods. Loke, his enemy, wished to ascertain how 
it was that he always escaped unhurt. Assuming 
the form of an old woman, he repaired to Friga. 
" In battle," said he to her, " arrows, javelins, and 
rocks, fall upon your son Balder, without doing 
him any harm." — " I know it," said Friga ; " all 
those things have sv r orn not to hurt him : there is 
nothing in nature from which I have not obtained 
the same promise, except a plant which seemed too 
weak to do him any injury : it grows upon the 
bark of the oak, and it if called Misletoe." Thus 
spake Friga. Loke instantly went in quest of the 
plant, and, returning to the assembled gods, who 
were fighting with the invulnerable Balder, for their 
sports are battles, he went up to the blind Heder. 
" Why," said he, " dost not thou launch thy darts 
against Balder V — "Alas!" replied Heder, "lam 
blind, and I have no weapons." Loke gave him a 
dart made of Misletoe, saying, " Balder is right 
before thee." The blind Heder threw the dart, 
which pierced Balder, who fell lifeless. Thus the 
invulnerable son of a goddess was killed by a dart 
made of Misletoe, thrown by a blind man. Such is 
the origin of the respect paid by the Gauls to this 
parasite shrub. 


It is scarcely necessary to remind the reader of 
the important part still performed by the Misletoe 
in our Christmas gambols. 

moss. 241 



Jean Jacques Rousseau, so long tormented by 
his own passions, and persecuted by those of other 
persons, soothed the later years of his life by the 
study of nature : the Mosses in particular engaged 
his attention. It is these, he would frequently say, 
that give a look of youth and freshness to our fields ; 
they embellish nature at the moment when the 
flowers have left us, and when their withered stems 
are mingled with the mould of our plains. In 
fact, it is in winter that the Mosses offer to the 
eye of the botanist their carpet of emerald green, 
their secret nuptials, and the charming mysteries 
of the urns and amphorse which enclose their 

Like those friends whom neither adversity nor 
ingratitude can alienate, the Mosses, banished from 
cultivated lands, take possession of waste and sterile 


spots, which they cover with their own substance, 
and gradually change into a fertile soil : they spread 
themselves over marshes, and soon transform them 
into smiling plains. In winter, when no other 
plants vegetate, they take up the hydrogen and the 
carbon which vitiate the air we breathe, and give it 
back to us charged with the oxygen which purifies 
it. In summer they form, beneath overarching 
trees, carpets on which the shepherd, the lover, 
and the poet, alike delight to rest. The little birds 
line with it the nests which they prepare for their 
infant families, and the squirrel constructs with it 
his circular dwelling. Nay, it may be asserted that 
but for the Mosses part of our globe would be un- 

At the extremity of the earth, the Laplanders 
cover with Moss the subterranean abodes, where, 
collected in families, they defy the longest and se- 
verest winters. Their numerous herds of reindeer 
have no other food, yet they supply their owners 
with delicious milk, nutritious flesh, and warm 
clothing ; thus combining for the poor Laplander all 
the advantages that we derive from the cow, the 
horse, and the sheep. 

Thus Nature dispenses her bounty in the most 

moss. 243 

rigorous climates : she enwraps in Moss all that 
vegetates and all that breathes, as in a vegetable 
fleece, capable of preserving her less gifted children 
from the effects of the intense cold, and keeping 
them warm upon her maternal bosom. 




This pretty plant, which is the gift of Spain, is 
the ornament of our shrubberies in winter, appearing 
in full leaf and flower at a time when other plants 
are stripped of theirs. Neither the scorching breath 
of summer nor the cold blast of winter can despoil 
it of its charms : at the same time assiduous care is 
necessary to preserve it. The emblem of constant 
and delicate friendship, it always seeks to please, 
but dies if neglected. 




The Cornel Cherry-tree grows no higher than 
eighteen or twenty feet. It is of a very slow 
growth, but lives for ages. It blossoms in spring, 
but its bright scarlet berries are not ripe till 

The Greeks consecrated this tree to Apollo, no 
doubt because that god presided over the produc- 
tions of the mind, which require much time and 
reflection : — a charming emblem, intimating to 
those who were desirous to cultivate letters, elo- 
quence, and poetry, that, before they could earn the 
laurel crown, they must long wear that of patience 
and meditation. 

After Romulus had marked out the bounds of 
his rising city, he threw his javelin on the Mount 
Palatine. The weapon, made of the wood of the 
Cornel Cherry-tree, stuck fast in the ground, 


took root, grew, threw out leaves and branches and 
became a tree. This prodigy was considered as the 
happy presage of the power and duration of the 
infant empire. 

LAUREL. 247 


The Greeks and the Romans consecrated Laurel 
crowns to every species of glory. With these they 
adorned the brows of warriors and poets, of orators 
and philosophers, of vestals and emperors. This 
beautiful shrub grows abundantly at Delphi, on the 
banks of the river Peneus. There its aromatic and 
evergreen branches shoot up to the height of the 
loftiest trees ; and it is alleged that by means of 
some secret virtue they avert lightning from the 
spots which they adorn. 

According to ancient fable, the fair Daphne was 
the daughter of the river Peneus. Apollo fell in 
love with her, but she, preferring virtue to the love 
of the most eloquent of the gods, fled in order to 
avoid the seducing magic of his words. Apollo 
pursued, and was on the point of overtaking her, 
when the nymph invoked her father and was 
changed into a Laurel. The god, finding that it 


was an insensible tree that he held clasped in his 
arms, kissed its bright leaves. " Since thou canst 
not be my spouse," said he, " thou shalt at least be 
my tree. Thou shalt ever adorn my brow, my 
lyre, and my quiver ; and, as golden locks always 
cluster around my youthful head, so shalt thou 
always retain thy bright, beautiful foliage." Thence- 
forward the Laurel was sacred to Apollo. 





The providence of Nature is most admirably 
displayed in this beautiful evergreen tree, sometimes 
rising to the height of twenty or thirty feet, with 
shining prickly leaves and white flowers, which 
grow in clusters round the branches, and are suc- 
ceeded by berries of a bright scarlet colour, contain- 
ing four very hard seeds. The leaves form a 
grateful food to many animals : but Nature has 
armed them, for self-defence against these depre- 
dators, with sharp prickles : and it is curious to 
observe that the thorny leaves grow only on the 
lower part of the tree where they are most likely to 
be destroyed ; and that those above, out of the 
reach of cattle, invest themselves with smooth 
leaves, as if conscious that there they are safe. 

The Holly is an ornament to our woods, stripped 
bare by winter : its berries serve for food to the 
little birds that never leave us, and its foliage 


affords them an hospitable shelter during the cold 
season. Thus Nature by a kind forethought has 
taken care to preserve the verdure of this handsome 
tree all the year round and to arm it with thorns, 
that it may furnish both food and protection to the 
innocent creatures which resort to it for refuge. It 
is a friend which her all-powerful hand raises up for 
them against the time when all other reliance fails. 
As, however, this is not a world of unmixed good, 
it may be added that, from the bark of the common 
Holly, when fermented and washed from the woody 
fibres, is made the bird-lime that is used for catching 
small birds. 

The Holly, with its scarlet berries, is the most 
beautiful of the evergreens that have been used for 
ages to adorn churches and houses at the joyful 
season of Christmas : 

Christinas, the joyous period of the year : 
Now with bright Holly all the temples strow, 
With laurel green and sacred mistletoe. 


With holly and ivy, 

So green and so gay, 
We deck up our houses 

As fresh as the day. 

HOLLY. 251 

With bays and rosemary, 

And laurels complete, 
And every oue now 

Is a king in conceit. 

Poor Robin's Almanac, 1605. 




There is in vegetables something that invites, 
attracts, or repels us. The Yew is among all 
nations the emblem of sorrow. Its barkless trunk, 
its dark green foliage, with which its fruit, looking 
like drops of blood, stands in harsh contrast — in 
short, every thing about it warns the passenger to 
keep aloof from its dangerous shade. Persons who 
sleep under a Yew-tree are liable to be seized with 
dizziness, heaviness, and violent head-ache. Its 
sprays poison asses and horses, which eat them ; its 
juice is pernicious to man ; but the fruit is harmless, 
for children eat it without experiencing any ill 
effects. It exhausts the soil which supports it, and 
destroys all other plants that spring up beneath it. 

By our ancestors the Yew was planted in burial- 
grounds, where trees of this kind, of great age and 
size, may occasionally be seen to this day. They 
were not destined merely to overshadow the graves 

yew. 253 

of the dead, but, before the invention of fire-arms, 
their wood was chiefly employed for making bows, 
cross-bows, and arrows. The ancient Greeks used 
it for the same purposes. 

For a long time it served to adorn our gardens, 
where it formed hedges clipped into the shape of 
massive walls or tortured into fantastic figures ; but, 
thanks to the improved taste in landscape-gardening 
introduced during the last century, that barbarous 
perversion of nature is quite exploded in this coun- 
try, though it may yet be met with in the formal 
gardens of Holland. There, it is not uncommon to 
see the four corners of a perfect square ornamented 
with Yews clipped into the form of vases, pyramids, 
or prodigious balls. 

The Greeks, who had more just ideas of the real 
beauties of Nature, impressed, like ourselves, with 
the melancholy aspect of this tree, invented the fable 
of the unhappy Smilax, who, seeing that her love 
was rejected by the young Crocus, was transformed 
into a Yew. In their beautiful country, every plant 
every tree, spoke to men of heroes, of gods, and of 
love. Let us listen to their voices : to us, too, they 
will talk of Providence, who, after bestowing a pro- 
fusion of them for the supply of our wants, reserves 


some for our pleasures, or as monitors for our gui- 
dance. Some she gives to be the playthings of our 
childhood, to form wreaths for us in youth, to afford 
us delicious fruits and refreshing shade in every 
period of life. Are we melancholy, the willow in- 
vites us by soft murmurs ; are we disposed to love, 
the myrtle offers us its flowers ; are we rich, the 
horse-chestnut furnishes its superb umbrage ; are we 
sorrowful, the Yew seems to say to us : "Be of good 
cheer ; grief desolates the heart, as I desolate the soil 
that supports me : it is as dangerous to man as my 
shade is to the weary passenger !" 





There was a time when men were not united by 
any tie. Deaf to the voice of Nature, the mother 
would snatch from her famished son the wild fruit 
with which he was striving to appease the craving of 
hunger. If calamity reconciled them for a moment, 
all at once the sight of an oak loaded with acorns, or 
a beech-tree covered with mast, made them as bitter 
enemies as ever. The earth was then a scene of 
misery. There was neither law, religion, nor lan- 
guage. Man knew not his high prerogatives ; his 
reason was not yet awakened ; and frequently he 
proved himself more cruel than the ferocious beasts, 
whose fearful howlings he imitated. 

The gods at length took pity on men. Apollo 
and Mercury made presents to each other, and de- 
scended to the earth. The god of harmony received 


from the son of Maia the shell of a tortoise, out of 
which he had constructed a lyre, and gave him in 
exchange a Hazel stick, which had the power of im- 
parting a love of virtue and of reconciling hearts 
divided by envy and hate. Thus equipped, the two 
sons of Jupiter sought the abodes of mortals. Apollo 
first sang the eternal wisdom which created the uni- 
verse ; he told how the elements were produced, 
how love unites all the parts of nature in one general 
bond, and, lastly, how men ought to appease by 
prayer the wrath of the gods. At his voice animo- 
sities were suspended, and revenge was banished 
from every heart. Mercury then touched men with 
the rod which Apollo had given to him. He loosed 
their tongues, and 1 aught them to express their 
thoughts in words. He then explained to them that 
union constitutes strength, and that, without mu- 
tually assisting each other, they could not render the 
earth productive. Awakened by his exhortations, 
filial piety and love of country sprang forth to unite 
mankind, and he made commerce the general bond 
of the world. His last thought was the most sub- 
lime, for it was devoted to the gods : he taught men 
to resemble them in universal love and beneficence. 
Adorned with two light wings, and entwined with 

HAZEL. 257 

serpents, the Hazel rod given to the god of eloquence 
by the god of harmony is still, by the name of cadu- 
ceus, the emblem of peace, commerce, and reconci- 





The ancients consecrated this shrub to the Furies. 
The smoke of its green roots was the incense which 
they offered in preference to the infernal gods ; and 
they burned its berries during funerals to ban malign 
influences. In some parts of the Continent, the 
simple villager still believes that the perfume of Juni- 
per berries purines the air, and drives evil spirits 
from his humble cot. 

The Juniper, which sometimes clothes itself in a 
golden yellow livery, rarely thrives under cultiva- 
tion : when left at liberty, it loves to grow on the 
margin of woods. Weak and timorous animals fre- 
quently seek refuge under its long branches, which 
droop to the ground. The hare, when hard pressed, 
repairs to it, and squats with confidence beneath its 
sprays, the strong scent of which frequently sets the 
dogs at fault. Often, too, the thrush entrusts to it 
her young brood, and feeds upon its fruit : while the 


entomologist comes to study, around its branches 
bristling with spikes, a thousand resplendent insects, 
which have no other defence, and seem conscious 
that this shrub is destined to protect their weakness. 





The annexed plate furnishes an example of the 
facility with which the principles laid down in the 
preceding pages may be reduced to practice. The 
subject is taken from the following song, by a 
French poet, the Chevalier Parney : 

Aimer est un plaisir charmant, 

C'est un bonheur qui nous enivre, 
Et qui produit l'enchantement, 

Avoir aime, c'est ne plus vivre ; 
, • . Helas ! c'est avoir achete 

Cette accablante verite, 

Que les sermens sont un mensonge, 
Que l'amour trompe tot ou tard, 
Que l'innocence n'esl qu'un art, 

Et que le bonheur n'est qu'un songe. 

It may be thus rendered : 

" To love is a pleasure, a happiness, which in- 
toxicates : to love no longer is to live no longer ; 
it is to have bought this sad truth, that innocence is 
falsehood, that love is an art, and that happiness is a 

A /f/ '' ' :: '< "■"'«"/< <,,:,/. //,:,/,./„„ fataA 


, £/„vW 







Absence, Wormwood. Absence, according to La 
Fontaine, is the worst of evils : Wormwood is 
the bitterest of plants. Its name, derived from 
the Greek, signifies without sweetness. 

Accommodating Disposition, Valerian. Page 131. 

Activity, Thyme. Page 99. 

Affection, Generous and Devoted, Honeysuckle. 
Page 107. 


After-thought, China Aster. Page 187. The 
Aster begins to blow when other flowers are 
scarce. It is like an after-thought of Flora's who 
smiles at leaving us. 

Agitation, shaking Sainfoin. It has been re- 
marked that the terminating leaflet of this plant is 
motionless, while the two others, which are much 
smaller, shake incessantly during t«he day. This 
motion is one of the most singular phenomena of 
botany. It was first observed in Bengal by Lady 

Ambition, Hollyhock. Page 200. 

Amiableness, Jasmine. Page 133. 

Ardour, Broom. It is said that the spadix of the 
plants of this family, of which there are more 
than fifty species, acquires so strong a heat as to 
be painful to the hand when touched by it. This 
surprising fact is attested by several naturalists, 
and among others by Bory de Saint Vincent, 
and Hubert. 

Artifice, Clematis. Beggars, in order to excite 
pity, make false ulcers on their flesh by means of 
the Clematis. This infamous artifice often pro- 
duces in the end a real sore. 

Arts, The, Acanthus. Page 102. 


Attachment, Devoted. Peruvian Heliotrope. Page 

Beauty, Capricious, Musk Rose. The small flow- 
ers of the Musk rose would be insignificant, if 
they did not grow in clusters of from twenty to 
one hundred and more. Their delicate musky 
scent is very agreeable. This plant, however, is 
extremely capricious : all at once it will languish, 
in situations which at first appeared the most 
favourable for it ; and one year it will be loaded 
with flowers, while the next perhaps it will have 
none at all. 

Ever Netv. The Monthly Rose, which 

flowers all the year. 

Fleeting; Withered Rose. When we con- 
template a withered Rose, and reflect that only 
a few hours since it was revelling in all the pride 
of beauty, we cannot but regard it as an appro- 
priate emblem of the fleeting nature of personal 
charms ; for, brilliant as they may be, how quickly 
do they fade ! Still, the withered Rose, which, 
though in decay, retains its fragrance, may teach 
us that, even when beauty has fled, we may yet, 
like it, have it in our power to please. 

Lasting, Stock. Page 150. 


Beloved Daughter, Cinquefoil. In wet weather 
the leaves of this plant contract and bend over 
the flower, forming, as it were, a little tent to 
cover it — an apt emblem of an affectionate mother 
engaged in protecting a beloved child. 

Beneficence, Mallow. Page 145. The Potato, 
the peculiar vegetable of the poor, is also regarded 
as an emblem of beneficence. This root, lasting 
but for a year, escapes the monopoly of trade. 
Modest as true charity, the potato hides its trea- 
sures : it bestows them on the rich, and feeds 
the poor with them. America presented us with 
this useful vegetable, which has for ever banished 
from Europe one of the direst calamities — 

Beware of Excess, Saffron. — A weak infusion of 
Saffron cheers the spirits, but those who drink 
too much of this liquor go mad. It is the same 
with its odour : if you smell to it slightly, it re- 
freshes ; if to excess, it kills. 

Black7iess, Ebony-tree. Pluto, the sovereign of 
the infernal regions, was seated on a throne of 
Ebony. It is said of a wicked man — he has a 
heart as black as Ebony. This saying no doubt 
originated in this circumstance, that while the 


alburnum of the Ebony-tree is white, its foliage 
soft and silvery, and its flowers brilliant and beau- 
tiful, the heart alone is really black. 

Bluntness, Borage. The leaves of Borage are 
prickly, hairy, and wrinkled ; but the whole of 
the plant is wholesome. Its good qualities make 
us endure and even forget its rough appearance, 
which reminds us that bluntness is frequently 
accompanied by a good heart. 

Boldness, Larch. This tree grows upon the loftiest 
mountains, where it attains a prodigious height. 
In the North, it is often covered with a species of 
lichen, which envelopes it as with a thick fur. 
The rustics amuse themselves with setting fire to 
this singular clothing : it catches freely, and a 
light flame suddenly shoots up to the sky, spark- 
ling and going out in a moment. You would 
imagine that these beautiful trees had been 
placed in those situations for the express purpose 
of exhibiting to the desert the astonishing spec- 
tacle of the most magnificent fire-works. 

Calm Repose, Buck-bean. Page 101. 
Calumny, Madder. Madder stains red. When 


sheep have browsed this plant, their teeth look as 
if they were stained by the blood of some victim. 
Thus wickedness frequently takes advantage of 
deceitful appearances to calumniate innocence. 

Candour, White Violet. Candour precedes Mo- 
desty : it is a Violet still clothed in the colour of 

Chastity, Sensitive Plant. Page 176. 

, Orange-flower. It is customary in some 

countries for brides to wear a wreath of Orange- 
flowers ; and it is still usual in the neighbourhood 
of Paris to deny this ornament on their wedding- 
day to females who have not preserved their 

Child-birth, Dittany. When Juno presided at the 
birth of children, by the name of Lucina, she 
wore a crown of Dittany. The pleasing smell of 
this shrub, and the medicinal properties for which 
it was so famous among the ancients, cause it to 
be still held in esteem. It is a native of the 
island of Crete. 

Childhood, Primrose. Page 39. 

Confidence, Liverwort, or Hepatica. When the 
gardeners see th"e pretty flowers of the Hepatica, 


they say : " The earth is in love ; we may sow 
with confidence." 

Consolation, Poppy, Page 167. 

, Wild Poppy. The Wild Poppy con- 
tains in its scarlet bosom an invaluable soother of 
pain and sorrow. The ancients, who regarded 
sleep as the healer of all woes, the great com- 
forter of the world, gave him for his only orna- 
ment a wreath of Poppies. 

Constancy, Canterbury Bell. The stems of this 
plant frequently shoot up to the height of three 
or four feet, and are covered from bottom to top 
with large beautiful flowers, that open in July, 
and retain all their splendour till October. The 
colour of these blue bell-shaped flowers is that of 

Coquetry, Desire to Please, Mezeron. Page 38. 

, Yellow Day Lily. Page 175. 

Courage, Black Poplar. This tree was consecrated 
to Hercules. 

Cmelty, Nettle. The sting of the Nettle causes a 
pain like that from a burn. On examining the 
leaves of the Nettle, with a microscope, you are 
surprised to see them covered with stiff, articu- 
lated, sharp-pointed bristles, which are so many 


conductors to a sharp burning liquid, enclosed in 
a bladder at the bottom of each. These hairs 
and bladders are exactly like the stings of bees. 
In the insect as in the plant, it is the sharp 
humour that causes the pain. 

Cure, Balm of Gilead. This exquisite balm, so 
justly esteemed by the ancients, seems to have 
been provided by Nature to soothe pain ; thus we 
often use the word balm in a moral and figurative 
sense, to express any thing that allays and miti- 
gates sorrow. Beneficent virtue and affectionate 
friendship are true balms, which heal the wounds 
of the heart, a thousand times more painful than 
any physical evils. 

Curiosity, Sycamore. This tree is mentioned but 
once historically, and that is in the Bible. Zac- 
cheus the publican mingled with the crowd on 
the day of our Saviour's triumphal entry into 
Jerusalem, and, in order to obtain a better view of 
the Messiah, he climbed up into a Sycamore-tree 
which has thence been made the emblem of 

Dangerous Pleasures, Tuberose. Page 190. 
Deceitful Charms, Thorn Apple. Page 159. 


Delicacy, Corn-bottle. The beautiful blue of this 
flower, which is like that of a cloudless sky, is 
the emblem of a tender and delicate affection 
nourished by hope. 

Desire, Jonquil. The Jonquil, which came to us 
from Constantinople, is with the Turks the em- 
blem of desire. 

Despair, Marigold and Cypress. Cypress is the 
emblem of death ; the Marigold of sorrow. The 
combination of the two expresses despair. 

Dignity, Clove-tree. The aromatic Clove-tree is a 
native of the Molucca Islands. The people of 
those islands wear its flowers, which we call 
Cloves as a mark of distinction. 

Discretion, Maiden Hair. Page 203. 

Disdain, Yellow Pink. As haughty people are in 
general unaccommodating and unamiable, so of 
all the pink tribe the yellow is the least beautiful, 
the least fragrant, and yet requires the most care. 

Docility, Rush. It is a proverbial saying, as supple 
as a Rush. 

Do Me Justice, Chestnut-tree. Chestnuts are en- 
closed, two, three, or four, together, in one green 
husk, armed with numerous spikes. Those who 


are not acquainted with the tree disregard the 
fruit on account of its rough appearance. 
Durability, Cornel cherry tree. Page 245. 

Elegance, Rose Acacia. The art of the toilet can- 
not produce any thing fresher or more elegant 
than the attire of this pretty shrub. Its drooping 
branches, its gay green, its beautiful bunches of 
pink flowers, resembling bows of ribands, all give 
it the appearance of a fashionable female in her 

Elevation, Fir-tree. The Fir delights in cold 
regions, and grows there to a prodigious height. 

Eloquence, Lotus. The Egyptians consecrated the 
flowers of the Lotus to the sun, the god of elo- 
quence. This flower closes and sinks into the 
water at sun-set, rising from it and opening again 
as soon as the brilliant luminary reappears above 
the horizon. It constitutes one of the ornaments 
of the head of Osiris. The Indian gods are 
frequently represented floating on the water upon 
a Lotus flower : perhaps an emblem of the earth 
issuing from the bosom of the deep. 

Enchantment, Vervain. Page 142. 

Envy, Bramble. The Bramble, like envy, creeps 


and strives to stifle every thing that comes near 

Error, Bee Orchis. The flowers of this plant so 
nearly resemble a small humble-bee in shape and 
colour that they might easily be mistaken for that 

Esteem, Sage. The common garden Sage has ever 
been held in great esteem by all domestic practi - 
tioners for its medical virtues. By the ancients it 
was supposed to possess the virtue of prolonging 
life : hence a line in one of their poets, which 
signifies : " How can a man die in whose garden 
there grows Sage 1" 

Faith, Passion Flower. In the Passion Flower you 
find a representation of the crown of thorns, the 
scourge, the cross, the sponge, the nails, and the 
five wounds of Christ ; whence its name. 

Falsehood, Bugloss. Page 82. 

, Manchineel-tree. The fruit of the Man- 

chineel-tree resembles an apple. This deceitful 
appearance, together with an agreeable smell, in- 
vites you to eat it : but its soft and spongy sub- 
stance contains a milky and perfidious juice, 
which at first appears insipid, but soon becomes 


so caustic as to burn at once the lips, the 
and the tongue. All travellers agree in stating 
that the best remedy for so violent a poison is 
sea-water. Luckily it is always at hand, as the 
tree grows invariably on the sea-shore. 

False Riches, Sun-flower. Page 235. 

Festivity, Parsley. Page 229. 

Fidelity, Speedwell, or Veronica, formed ixomvera- 
icen, a compound of Latin and Greek, signifying 
true image. This derivation, illiterate and bar- 
barous as it is, has the sanction of the supersti- 
tious legend of St. Veronica, whose handkerchief 
is recorded to have received the impression of our 
Saviour's face, as he used it in bearing his cross 
to the place of crucifixion. 

Fidelity in JWisfortune, Wallflower. Page 59. 

Finesse, Sweet-william. This plant, with its large 
brilliant bunches of blossoms, displays in all its 
parts exquisite beauty and delicacy. 

Fire, Fiaxinella. When the day has been hot and 
dry, the Dittany emits an inflammable gas, which, 
being condensed by the cool evening air, forms 
around it an atmosphere that takes fire at the ap- 
proach of a light, without injuring the plant. 

Flame, Flower-de-Luce. The Flower-de-Luce, or 


Iris Germanica, is a plant which the peasants of 
Germany are fond of cultivating on the roofs of 
their cottages. When the wind waves its beauti- 
ful flowers, and the sun gilds their petals, tinged 
with gold, purple, and azure, it looks as if light 
flames were playing on the top of those rustic 

Flattery, Venus's Looking-glass. As soon as the 
sun sheds his golden rays upon our corn-fields, we 
see the bright purple flowers of a pretty variety 
of campanula scattered over them: but, should 
clouds intercept his beams, the corollas of 
these flowers immediately close, as at the ap- 
proach of night. It is related that Venus one day 
dropped one of her mirrors. A shepherd picked 
it up ; but, no sooner had he cast his eyes on this 
glass, which possessed the property of embellish- 
ing whatever it reflected, than he forgot his mis- 
tress, and did nothing but admire himself. Love, 
fearful of the consequences of such a silly error, 
broke the mirror, and changed its fragments into 
this pretty plant, which has ever since retained 
the name of Venus's Looking-glass. 

Folly, Columbine. This graceful flower has been 


made the emblem of folly, but whether on account 
of the party-colour which it frequently takes in 
the garden, or in allusion to the shape of the nec- 
tary, which turns over, like the caps of the old 
jesters, or those which painters give to Folly, we 
are left to divine. 

Foresight, Holly. Page 249. 

Forgetf ulness, Moonwort. This plant has not re- 
ceived its name from its seed, as it has been gene- 
rally supposed, but from the partition which di- 
vides its broad, flat pods, and is round like the 
moon. Rene, duke of Bar and Lorraine, having 
been taken prisoner at the battle of Toulongeon, 
painted, with his own hand, a sprig of Moonwort, 
and sent it to his vassals, to reproach them for 
their dilatoriness in effecting his deliverance. 

Forget-me-not, Scorpion Grass. Page 183. 

Forsaken, Anemone. Anemone was a nymph, 
beloved by Zephyr. Flora, jealous of her, banish- 
ed her from her court, and transformed her into a 
flower, that blows before the return of spring. 
Zephyr has abandoned this unhappy beauty to the 
rude caresses of Boreas, who, unable to gain her 
love, harshly shakes her, half opens her blossoms, 


and causes her immediately to fade. An Ane- 
mone, with these words, Brevis est usus — " Her 
reign is short" — is admirably expressive of the 
transitory nature of beauty. 

Friendship, Acacia. Page 157. 

Ivy. Page 236. 

Frivolity, London Pride. Though Nature has not 
painted any flower with more delicacy than the 
spotted petals of this plant, whence it received the 
name of None-so-pretty : still it is considered as 
the emblem of a light and frivolous sentiment ; 
so that a lover would think it an insult to his 
mistress to offer her a nosegay in which it was 

Frivolous Amusement, Bladder-nut. The fruit of 
the Bladder-nut tree, when pressed between the 
fingers, bursts with a report. Idle persons some- 
times indulge, as well as little boys, in the frivo- 
lous amusement of producing this noise. 

Frugality, Chicory. Horace has celebrated the 
frugality of his repasts, composed of Mallows and 

Gallantry, A Nosegay. The attentions of gallantry 
cannot be better expressed than by a Nosegay. 


Such a present may be of little intrinsic value, 
but it is always a proof of amiable and delicate 

Game, Play, Hyacinth. This flower, so celebrated 
in the songs of the poets, from the time of Homer 
to the present day, is made hieroglyphical of play, 
because a youth named Hyacinthus was killed, 
while playing with Apollo, by a quoit, which the 
jealous Zephyr blew upon him. Apollo, unable 
to recal his favourite to life, changed him into 
the flower which bears his name. 

Generosity, Orange-tree. The Orange-tree is covered 
at one and the same time with flowers, fruit, and 
foliage. It is a generous friend, which is con- 
tinually lavishing kindness upon us. 

Genius, Plane-tree. The Portico at Athens was 
surrounded by long avenues of majestic Plane- 
trees. The Greeks paid a kind of worship to 
those beautiful trees, and consecrated them to 
genius and intellectual pleasures. 

Girl, JRosebud. A young girl is a rose still in 

Glory, Laurel. Page 247. 

Good Education, Cherry-tree. It is generally be- 
lieved that the Cherry-tree was brought from 


Cerasonte, a town in the kingdom of Pontus, to 
Rome, by Lucullus. It is not the less true, how- 
ever, that our woods have always produced several 
species of wild cherry, which require nothing 
but careful cultivation to change their harsh, sour 
berries into that delicious fruit which is an orna- 
ment to our gardens and our desserts, and a 
favourite with young and old. 

Grace, Hundred-leaved Rose. When the Graces 
accompany Venus, and the Loves, they are 
crowned with myrtle ; when they attend the 
Muses, they are represented as adorned with 
wreaths of the Hundred-leaved Rose. 

Grandeur, Ash-tree. In the Edda.. the gods are 
said to hold their court under a miraculous Ash- 
tvee, which covers the surface of the whole world 
with its branches. The top of this tree reaches 
the sky ; its roots penetrate to hell. From the 
latter issue two springs ; in one of which wisdom 
is hidden, and in the other is contained the know- 
ledge of futurity. 

Grief, Marigold. Page 153. 

, Aloe. Page 234. 

Happiness, Sweet Sultan. In the harems of the 


East, this lusciously sweet flower is an emblem 
of supreme happiness. 

, Return of, Lily of the Valley. Page 


Hate, Basil. Poverty is sometimes represented by 
the figure of a female covered with rags, seated 
by a plant of Basil. It is common to say that 
Hate has the eye of a basilisk, a fabulous animal, 
which is supposed to kill with a single glance. 
The name of Basil, however, is derived from a 
Greek word, signifying royal, a term indicating 
the excellence of this fragrant plant. 

Heart -unacquainted ivith Love. White Rosebud. 
Before the breath of Love had animated the 
world, all roses were white and all female hearts 

Hermitage, Milkwort. This pretty plant, which 
grows to the height of a foot, never loses its leaves, 
which resemble those of box. The hermits, who 
formerly dwelt on elevated places, planted it 
around their habitations. The ancients regarded 
this plant as favourable to cattle, and thought 
that it caused them to yield a great deal of milk, 
as is expressed by its Greek name, Polygala. 


Hidden, Merit, Coriander. Fresh Coriander has 
an intolerable smell, as its Greek name, Koris, a 
bug, implies : yet its aromatic seeds are in request 
with cooks and confectioners, who often use it to 
flavour pastry and made dishes. 

Hope, Snowdrop. Page 36. 

, Hawthorn. Page 67. 

Horror, Virginia Cactus. This plant throws out in 
every direction its trailing shoots, which resemble 
clusters of snakes. 

Hospitality, Oak-tree. Page 222. 

Humility, Broom. Page 109. 

/ attach myself to you, Ipomaea, Indian Jasmine. 
The scarlet Ipomasa requires a supporter for its 
slender branches, and without fatiguing that 
supporter, it wreaths it with foliage and flowers. 

/ declare tvar against you, Wild Tansey. This 
plant resembles the pyramidal cypress. In some 
parts of Italy, people present stalks of it to those 
whom they mean to insult. 

I die if neglected, Laurustinus. Page 244. 

I feel your kmdness, Flax. We are under so many 
obligations to Flax, that we cannot open our 


eyes without being deeply sensible of them. We 
are indebted to it for linen cloth, paper and 

Hove you, Peruvian Heliotrope. Page 192. 

J shall not survive you, Black Mulberry-tree. Every 
body knows the affecting story of Pyramus and 
Thisbe. Pyramus, in the belief that his beloved 
Thisbe had been devoured by a furious lioness, 
killed himself in despair. Thisbe, who had fled 
affrighted from their place of meeting, returned 
just in time to see her lover expire. She could 
not survive him, and the same dagger united the 
lovers in death. 

J share your sentiments, The Garden Daisy. It 
appears that it is very long since cultivation 
doubled the pretty field Daisy. When the mis- 
tress of a knight permitted him to have this 
flower engraven on his arm, it was a public 
avowal that she returned his love. 

/ surmount all difficulties, Misletoe. Page 238. 

I will think of it, Wild Daisy. In the times of 
chivalry, when a lady would neither reject nor 
accept the suit of her lover, she adorned her 
brow with a wreath of Wild Daisies, which 
intimated : / will lliink of it. 


Immortality, Amaranth. Page 226. The name of 
this flower is composed of two Greek words, 
which signify never-fading. 

Impatience, Balsam. The seed-vessel of this plant 
contains five cells. When maturity approaches, 
each of these divisions curls up at the slightest 
touch, and scatters its seeds to a distance by a 
spontaneous movement. Hence its English ap- 
pellation — Touch-me-not. 

Importunity, Burdock. Burdock takes possession 
of a good soil, from which it is very difficult to 
extirpate it. Everybody is acquainted with its 
burs, which fasten on one's clothes in such a 
troublesome manner. 

Inconstancy, Large-flowered Evening Primrose. 
A native of Virginia, which, notwithstanding its 
inconstancy, has been favourably received in our 

Independence, Wild Plum-tree. The wild Plum is 
the least tractable of our native trees. It will not 
bear the knife, neither can it be transplanted. 

Indiscretion, Bulrush. King Midas, having pre- 
ferred the singing of Marsyas, the satyr, to that of 
Apollo, the god clapped upon him a pair of ass's 


cars. The king's barber saw them, and, unable 
to keep the secret, buried it at the foot of a cluster 
of Bulrushes. These reeds, shaken by the wind, 
continually murmured, King Midas has ass's 

Infidelity, Yellow Rose. It is well known that 
yellow is the colour of false as well as of jealous 
people. The Yellow Rose seems also to be their 
flower. Injured by wet, scorched by the sun, this 
scentless rose, which profits neither by attention 
nor liberty, seems to thrive only under restraint. 
When you would see it in perfection, you must 
bend down its buds towards the ground, and 
keep ihem by force in that position. 

Ingenuity, Pencilled-leaf Geranium. When we 
compare the works of God with those of man, 
how trifling the latter appear ! Take a piece of 
the finest lawn, look at it through a glass, and it 
appears like canvas : take, on the other hand, 
the meanest of the Almighty's works, and the 
more you examine it the greater harmony and 
symmetry you will find. '\ he pencilled-leaf 
Geranium to the negligent and careless observer 
appears a simple flower ; but examine it closely, 


mark the pink veins that meander in every direc- 
tion over its leaves, sometimes so delicate as to be 
scarcely visible : study it well, and the more you 
do so the more beautiful it will appear : and 
learn thence to admire the skill and ingenuity 
displayed in the works of the Creator. 

Ingratitude, Buttercup. This plant is the most 
mischievous of any in our meadows : cultivation 
makes its bad qualities worse. It flowers from 
May to August. 

Injjistice, Hop. The Hop is made the emblem of 
injustice, because its climbing tendrils stifle the 
trees and plants which they entwine in their 
embrace ; and the prodigious vegetation of the 
whole plant speedily exhausts the soil upon 
which it grows. 

Innocence, Daisy. Page 51. 

Inspiration, Angelica. This beautiful plant, which 
grows in the northernmost countries, is employed 
to crown the Lapland poets, who fancy them 
selves inspired by its odour. 

Intoxication, Vine. Anacharsis said that the Vine 
produces three kinds of fruit, intoxication, de- 
bauchery, and repentance ; and that he who is 


temperate in speech, in diet, and in amusement, 
must be an excellent man. 
Irony, Sardonia. This plant has some resemblance 
to parsley. It contains a poison, which has the 
effect of contracting the mouth in so singular a 
manner as to give the appearance of laughter to a 
person at the point of death. Hence this horrible 
laugh is called the sardonic i it is often seen 
playing on the lips of Satire and cold Irony. 

Joking, Balm Gentle. This plant gives out an 
agreeable lemon smell : an infusion of it com- 
poses the nerves and excites mirth. 

Joy, Wood Sorrel. The Wood Sorrel, vulgarly 
called Cuckoo's Bread, flowers about Easter. 
This pretty plant every evening folds up its 
leaves, closes its flowers and lets them droop, as 
if to indulge in sleep: but at the first dawn of 
day, you would say that it was filled with joy, for 
it expands its leaves, opens its flowers, and, from 
this circumstance, no doubt, it is said by the 
country-people to give praise to God. 

Justice shall be done to you, Sweet-scented Tus- 
.silage. Page 208. 


Keep your promises, Plum-tree. The Plum-tree is 
every year covered with flowers ; but, if the hand 
of the skilful gardener does not remove a portion 
of this useless luxury, these trees will not have a 
crop oftener than once in three years. 

Life, Lucern. Page 106. 

Lightness, Larkspur. The flower of the Larkspur 
is papilionaceous, and of many different colours. 
It owes its name to the singular form of its seed- 
vessels, on which may be distinguised the joints 
and claws of a bird's foot. 

Longevity, Fig. The Fig has been made the em- 
blem of longevity, on account of its wholesome- 
ness, when ripe, and eaten in moderation. The 
Andalusians eat this fruit before breakfast, and 
they have this saying : En eso va la vida — 
" On this life depends." 

Love, Myrtle. Page 104. 

, Rose. Page 114. 

, Conjugal, Linden-tree. Page 94. 

, Declaration of, Tulip. Page 71. 

, First Emotio7is of, Lilac. Page 79. 

, Fraternal, Syringa. One of the Ptolemies, 

kings of Egypt, acquired celebrity for the love 


which he manifested for his brother. A species 
of the Syringa was consecrated to his memory ; 
and, as surname, Philadelphia, which signifies 
one who loves his brother, has been used to 
distinguish this genus, two species of which are 

Love, Maternal, Moss. Page 241. 

, Pure, Pink. Page 137. 

Majesty, Lily. Page 148. 

Meanness, Cuscuta or Dodder. This plant, of 
which there are five species, springs up out of the 
earth from seed, and no sooner does its stalk meet 
with that of another plant than it fastens upon it ; 
its own root dies, and it then lives entirely at the 
expense of others. Like a vile parasite, it absorbs 
all the juices of its supporter, and it is not long 
before it causes its destruction. 

Melancholy, Dead Leaves. Page 232. 

, Mind, Sorrowful Geranium. This 

charming species of Geranium, like the melan- 
choly mind, seeks obscurity, but it delights those 
who cultivate it by its delicious scent. Its colour 
is dark and unobtrusive, and it differs in every 


respect from the scarlet Geranium, the emblem of 

Message, Iris. There are more than thirty species 
of Iris, both bulbous and with other roots. From 
their brilliant and diversified colours, resembling 
those of the rainbow, these beautiful flowers have 
been named after the messenger of the gods. It 
is well known that the fair Iris was the bearer of 
good news only. 

.Misanthropy, Fuller's Teasel. The flowers of the 
Fuller's Teasel are armed with long, sharp thorns : 
the whole plant has a surly look. It is never- 
theless, handsome and useful : it is used by 
clothiers and fullers to raise the nap on their 
cloths, and has thence derived its name. 

Mistrust, Lavender. It was formerly believed that 
the asp, a dangerous species of viper, made La- 
vender its habitual place of abode, for which rea- 
son that plant was approached with extreme cau- 
tion. The ancients used it largely in their baths, 
whence its name, derived from the Latin verb 
lax-are, to wash. 

Modesty, Violet. Page 48. 

Morals, Wild Rue. The Moly, which Mercury is 
said to have given to Ulysses, as an antidote to 


Circe's beverage, is supposed to have been the 
root of the wild Rue. 

Mourning, Weeping Willow. Page 44. 

, Cypress. Page 216. 

Music, Reeds. Pan, who was in love with the 
beautiful Syrinx, was pursuing her one day on 
the bank of the river Ladon in Arcadia. The 
Nymph implored the help of the river, which re- 
ceived her into its waters, and transformed her 
into a cluster of Reeds. Pan cut several of the 
stalks of these Reeds of different lengths, and 
with them is said to have constructed the shep- 
herd's pipe. 

My Bane, My Antidote, White Poppy. Page 

My best days are past, Meadow Saffron. Page 

My regrets follow you to the grave, Asphodel. In 
ancient times, the Asphodel was planted near 
tombs, and it was thought that beyond the Ache- 
ron the shades of the deceased wandered in a vast 
field of Asphodels, and drank the oblivious waters 
of Lethe. 

Night, Night Convolvulus. There are several 


species of beautiful bindweed that open only at 
night. They are natives of hot countries. 

Oracle, Rustic, Dandelion, Page 164. 

Ornament, Hornbeam. This tree formerly consti- 
tuted a principal ornament of large gardens. It 
was employed to form long screens of verdure, 
arches, obelisks, pyramids, and colonnades. Le 
Notre has shown at Versailles with what skill 
and taste he could introduce it into his noble com- 

Patience, Patience Dock. The root of this plant 
is frequently used in medicine, it is extremely 

Peace, Olive. Peace, Wisdom, Concord, Cle- 
mency, Joy, and the Graces, are crowned with 
Olive. The dove sent out by Noah brought back 
to the ark an Olive branch, as an emblem of that 
peace which heaven had granted to the earth. 

, Hazel Page 255. 

Perfection, Strawberry. Page 127. 

Poetry, Eglantine. The Eglantine is the poet's 
flower. In the Floral Games it was the prize for 


the best composition on the charms of study and 

Power, Crown Imperial. The Crown Imperial, 
which belongs to the family of the lilies, grows to 
the height of two or three feet. The flowers are 
formed by a circle of tulip-shaped corollas, turned 
downwards, which have the appearance of so 
many gay bells, the stigma answering for the 
clapper ; the whole being crowned by a coma, or 
tuft of green leaves, which gives to it a singular 
and agreeable effect. Each of the bells contains 
some drops of water, which adhere to the bottom 
of the corolla till it withers : the footstalks of the 
flowers then raise themselves to ripen the seed. 

Prediction, Prophetic Marigold. This species of 
Marigold opens regularly at seven o'clock and 
remains open till four, if the weather is dry : if 
it does not open, or if it closes before its accus- 
tomed hour, you may be sure that there will be 
rain during the day. 

Preference, Apple Blossom. A handsome flower, 
which promises fine and useful fruit, may be pre- 
ferred to the rose itself. 

Preference, Rose-scented Geranium. There are 
more than a hundred specie* of the Geranium : 


some are sad, others brilliant, some scented, and 
others without smell. This, which is rose-scented, 
is distinguished by the softness of its leaves and 
the beauty of its flowers, as well as by its fragrant 

Presumption, Snapdragon. On pressing the sides 
of this flower, it opens like a gaping mouth, the 
stigma representing the tongue. On removing 
the pressure, the lips of the corolla snap together, 
and hence its name. The monopetalous corolla 
forms a mask, which resembles the face of an 
animal. The French call it Calf's Snout, from a 
supposed resemblance in the form of its seed- 
vessel or fruit. This beautiful plant has been 
judiciously introduced into our gardens, but, like 
presumptuous people, it is sometimes troublesome 
by spreading too far, and is consequently eradi- 

Pride, Amaryllis. Gardeners account the Amaryl- 
lis, of which there are numerous varieties a proud 
plant, because even after the greatest care it re- 
fuses to blossom. The Guernsey lily, is a splendid 
species. The number of flowers is commonly 
from eight to twelve, and the circumference of 
each about seven inches. The corolla in its prime 


has the colour of a fine gold tissue wrought on a 
rose-coloured ground, and when it begins to fade 
it is pink. In full sunshine it seems to be studded 
with diamonds ; but, by candle-light, the specks 
or spangles appear more like find gold-dust : when 
the petals are somewhat withered, they assume a 
deep crimson colour. The name of these beauti- 
ful plants is derived from a Greek word signify- 
ing to shine, sparkle, flash. 

Privation, Myrobolan. This tree is not unlike the 
plum-tree, and produces a fruit having the colour 
and appearance of a beautiful cherry, but contain- 
ing only a juice of a disagreeable flavour, so that 
the very birds refuse to feed upon it. 

Prohibition, Privet. Page 88. 

Prompt?iess, Ten Weeks Stock. This plant springs 
up very soon after it is sown, and blossoms within 
ten weeks. As the flowers are but short-lived, if 
you would enjoy them for any length of time, you 
ought to keep sowing them from March till Au- 
gust. Nothing can be more delightful than the 
red, white, and purple tints of these flowers, which 
give out a most fragrant smell. 

Prosperity, Beech. The beech may be considered 
as the rival of the oak for beauty of form and the 


utility of its wood. It grows in any situation, 
and shoots up with such rapidity that it is com- 
mon to say you may see it grow. 

Protection, Juniper. Page 258. 

Purity, Star of Bethlehem. Nothing can be more 
pure and pleasing than the appearance of this 
lovely plant, which throws up in the month of 
June a long bunch of star-like flowers, as white 
as milk. 

Rarity, Mandrake. The ancients attributed extra- 
ordinary virtues to the Mandragora, or Mandrake, 
but, as they have not left any accurate description 
of this plant, we know not the species to which 
they gave the name. Our quacks, ever eager to 
profit by ignorance, contrive, by a gross artifice, 
to give the miniature figure of a man to different 
roots, which they show to the credulous, assuring 
them that these are real Mandrakes, which are 
found only in a small and almost inaccessible dis- 
trict of China. They tell them also that the 
Mandrake cries lamentably when pulled up out 
of the ground ; that the person who pulls up one 
of these roots is sure to die soon afterwards : that, 
in order to procure it, the earth must be dug away 


from it, a cord tied round it, and the other end 
fastened to a dog, which pulls it away, and then 
has to pay the penalty of the impious deed. 
Were we to collect all the absurd and supersti- 
tious notions that have originated in ancient 
errors, respecting the supposed virtues of plants 
which never existed, they would form a curious 

Recollections, Painful, Flos Adonis. Page 147. 

Tender, Periwinkle. Page 89. 

Reconciliation, Hazel. Page 255. 

Reserve, Maple. The Maple has been made the 
emblem of reserve, because its flowers are late in 
opening and slow to fall. 

Resistance, Tremella Nostoc. This is a gelatinous 
plant, which has much engaged the attention of 
men of science, but has hitherto escaped their 
researches. It was in high repute with the 
alchy mists of old, who, like the vulgar of the 
present day, considered it to be the substance of 
what are termed falling stars, and employed it as 
such in their attempts to compose the philoso- 
pher's stone and a universal panacea. Other 
sages have regarded this gelatin as matter cast 
up by hawks after eating frogs ; and others, 


again, have supposed it to be a real animal. It 
appears, however, that, as if to escape their 
investigation, this plant and several more of the 
same nature mutually transform themselves one 
into another. It is found in the alleys of gardens 
and in meadows. After cool and rainy nights, it 
has been observed to cover the ground completely 
in certain spots ; but a few hours' sunshine 
causes it to disappear. In short nothing posi- 
tive is yet known concerning the Tremella, 
which continues to be a secret of Nature. 

Resolution, Cress. The ancients were of opinion, 
that those who eat Cress become firm and de- 
cided, for which reason this plant was in great 

Riches, Corn. Page 171. 

False, Sun-flower. Page 195. 

Royalty, Angrec. This is a parasitical plant of the 
Molucca Isles. In Ternate, the females of the 
blood royal wreathe it in their hair, but do not 
allow slaves or servants to wear it. They 
have reserved to themselves this exclusive right, 
says a traveller, persuaded that Nature, by causing 
this plant to grow only on elevated situations. 


has clearly indicated that its flowers are designed 
for the exclusive decoration of royally. 

Rudeness, Clot Bur. The rough and prickly Clot 
Bur, which possesses neither beauty nor utility, 
though continually banished from our fields, 
always finds its way back to them. 

Rupture, Greek Valerian. Pliny relates that several 
Kings contested the honour of having first disco- 
vered this plant : hence it received the name of 
Polemonium from the Greek word polemos, 
signifying war. 

Rupture of a Contract, Broken Straw. Page 183. 

Sadness, Dead Leaves. Page 232. 

Secrecy, Maiden Hair. Page 203. 

Self-love, Narcissus. Page 63. 

Separation, Carolina Jasmine. Page 161. 

Sickness, Field Anemone. In some countries 
people imagine that the flowers of the Field 
Anemone are so pernicious as to taint the air, 
and that those who breathe its emanations are 
liable to severe illness. 

Silence, White Rose. The god of silence was 
represented under the form of a young man, half- 
naked, with the fore-finger of one hand on his 


lips, and holding a White Rose in the other. 
Love was said to have given him this Rose, in 
order to propitiate his favour. The ancients 
placed a carved Rose over the doors of their ban- 
queting rooms, to caution their guests not to 
repeat anything that might be said there. 

Simplicity, Single Rose. Simplicity embellishes 
beauty itself, and throws a veil over deformity, 
Clemence Isaure, who instituted the Floral Games, 
allotted a Single Rose as the prize of eloquence. 

Skill, Spider Ophrys. Arachne was a very clever 
embroideress, who ventured to challenge Minerva 
to a trial of skill in the practice of the art. The 
offended goddess changed her imprudent rival 
into a spider. The Spider Ophrys resembles the 
insect, which, under its repulsive form, has lost 
none of the skill of its predecessor. 

Sleep, Poppy. From the Poppy is obtained lauda- 
num, which soothes the senses and induces sleep. 
Page 167. 

Snare, Catchfly. The Catchfly is an appropriate 
emblem of the gross snares spread for imprudent 
youth. Flies, attracted by its smell, are caught 
by the viscous matter which covers its flower- 


stalks, &nd holds them so fast that (hey cannot 

Solitude, Heath. Page 91. 

Sorrow, Yew-tree. Page 252. 

Soilness of Temper, Barberry. The fruit of the 
Barberry is extremely sour : the shrub that bears it 
is armed with thorns, and the flowers possess such 
irritability, that, at the slightest tuuch, all the 
stamina fold round the pistil. Thus this tree 
exhibits all the different characters of ill-tempered 

Spell, Circsea or Enchanters' Nightshade. This 
plant, as its name intimates, is famous in magical 
incantations. Its flower is rose-coloured, streaked 
with purple. It is found in damp, shady situa- 
tions : and is fond of growing upon the ruins of 
buildings and tombs. 

Stoicism, Box-tree. The Box is fond of the shade: 
it is an evergreen, enduring cold and heat, requi- 
ring little care, and flourishing for many years. 

Strutagem, Walnut. The city of Amiens was 
taken by the Spaniards, in 1599, by a singular 
stratagem. Some soldiers, disguised as country- 
men, came up to the gate with a cart load of 


Walnuts. Here they untied one of the sacks 
containing the nuts ; the latter fell out, as soon as 
the gate was opened and the cart Legan to move, 
and, while the guards were busy picking them 
up, a body of Spaniards, who were in ambush, 
fell upon them, and made themselves masters of 
the city. 
Strength, Fennel. The gladiators mixed this plant 
with their food, to increase their strength : and, 
after the games in the arena, the victor was 
crowned with Fennel. 
Stupidity, Scarlet Geranium. Page 210. 
Surliness, Thistle. The Scotch order of the This- 
tle is a gold chain, entwined with flowers of the 
Thistle, and bearing this motto — J\*e?no impune 
lacessit — " Nobody annoys me with impunity." 
Surprise, Truffle. This curious vegetable has ever 
been a subject of surprise to the observer. It has 
neither root, stalk, nor leaves. The Truffle grows 
under the ground, and never appears above the 
Suspicio?i, Champignon. There are several species 
of Champignons, which are known to be deadly 
poisons. The Ostiaks, a Siberian tribe, make 
with three heads of the Agaricus muscarius a 


preparation which will kill the strongest man in 
twelve hours. Several of the Champignons of 
this country also are very dangerous ; some of 
them contain so acrid a liquid, that a single drop 
will blister the tongue : yet the Russians, daring 
their long Lent, subsist almost entirely on 
Champignons; and by the French they are es- 
teemed a great delicacy. People ought, however, 
to be very suspicious of them, and to steep before 
they eat them in boiling water. This process 
deprives them at once of their smell and dange- 
rous properties, if they are not of a wholesome 
Sympathy, Thrift. This plant is mentioned by 
Pliny under the name of Statice, derived from a 
Greek word, which signifies making to stop, as 
this plant, by growing in sandy situations, is found 
to retain and stop the movement of the sands and 
to bind them together by its roots. Thrift is 
chiefly employed in gardens, for borders. It is 
found on every part of our coasts, where its favou- 
rite soil seems to be a marine mud or 002*3, mixed 
with the shingles of the sea-beach, and on this 
account, as well as from its grassy leaves, it is 
generally called the Sea-Pink. Phillips says, 


that he has seen it so abundant on a little 
common between Lancing and Worthing, in 
Sussex, as to form a complete green turf in winter, 
enamelling the ground from May until August by 
a mass of pink flowers, which form a charming 
contrast with the blue of the ocean. 

Tears, Helenium. The flowers of the Helenium 
resemble small suns of a beautiful yellow. 
They blow in autumn with the asters. They 
are said to have been produced by the tears of 

Temptation, Quince. It has been asserted that the 
golden fruit in the garden of the Hesperides were 
Quinces, and that these tempted Hercules to 
attack the dragon which guarded them : in confir- 
mation of this conjecture, a statue of the demi-god, 
holding a Quince in his hand, as a trophy, is 
referered to. It is also alleged that it was by 
means of Quinces given to him by Venus that 
Hippomenes amused Atalanta during the race 
with her, and won it. It is further supposed that 
the fruit of the forbidden tree, which Eve was tempt- 
ed to pluck, was the Quince and not the apple, as it 
is generally believed. 


Thankfulness, Agrimony. This is a pretty cam- 
panula, whose flowers, of the most delicate lilac 
colour, hang from the stalk like bells. The French 
call it Religieuse des Champs, " Nun of the 
Fields," a name, probably given out of gratitude 
to this pretty, salutary, and useful campanula, in 
memory of some kind, tender, and compassionate 

Think of me, Heart's-ease. Page 56. 

Ties, Tendrils of climbing plants, which entwine 
and bind fast every thing they come near. 

Time, White Poplar. The White Poplar raises its 
lofty head on a straight trunk, covered with silvery 
bark, to the height of ninety feet or more. The 
ancients consecrated it to Time, because the leaves 
of this handsome tree are in constant motion, and, 
being dark on one side and white on the other, 
they indicate the alternation of day and night. 

Timidity, Marvel of Peru. Page 219. 

Tranquillity, Stonecrop. The ancients regarded 
Stonecrop as a cure for hydrophobia ; it is still 
sometimes resorted to in that dreadful malady. 

Treachery, Bilberry, or Whortleberry. (Enomaup, 
father of the beautiful Hippodamia, chose for his 
attendant the yoaag Myrtillus, son of Mercury. 


Proud of his skill, he insisted that all the suitors 
who aspired to the hand of his daughter should 
compete for the prize in a chariot-race with him. 
Pelops, who wished to obtain Hippodamia, pro- 
mised Myrtillus a large reward, if he would take 
out the linch-pin of his master's chariot. Myr- 
tillus was not proof against the offer : in conse- 
quence, the chariot was overturned and (Enomaiis 
killed : but, as he expired, he implored Pelops to 
avenge him, which he did, by throwing the trea- 
cherous attendant into the sea. The waters hav- 
ing borne back his body to the shore, Mercury 
changed it into the shrub, called, by a corruption 
from his name, Whortleberry, or Bilberry. It 
grows on the sea-shore in cool and shady places. 
Its pretty bell-flowers are succeeded by berries of 
a dark blue, of a tart and agreeable flavour. 
Truth, Bitter-sweet Nightshade. The ancients 
thought that Truth was the mother of Virtue, 
the daughter of Time, and queen of the world. 
It is a common saying with us that the Truth 
conceals hersalf at the bottom of a well, and that 
she always mingles some bitterness with her 
blessings : and we have given for her emblem a 
useless plant that, like her, delights in shade, and 


is always green. The bitter-sweet Nightshade is, 
I believe, the only plant in this country that loses 
and re-produces its leaves twice a year. 

Union, Whole Straw. Page 183. 

Uselessness, Meadow-Sweet. This plant is con- 
sidered as an emblem of uselessness, because doc- 
tors have not discovered any medicinal virtues in 
it, and animals refuse to eat it. 

Utility, Grass. Grasses are the most common, but 
perhaps the most useful family of the vegetable 

War, Achillea-millefolia. This plant heals all 
wounds made with iron. It is said to have been 
used by the hero whose name it bears to heal the 
wounds of Telephus. 

Warmth of Feeling, Peppermint. Minthes was 
surprised by Proserpine in the company of her 
gloomy spouse. The enraged goddess changed 
her rival into a plant, which seems to comprehend 
in its double flavour the coldness of fear and the 
warmth of love. This plant we cultivate by the 
name of Peppermint, to which we are indebted 
for the cordial water and lozenges named after it. 

Weakness, Musk plant. This plant has so mild 


and delicate a scent, that it is agreeable even to 
persons who have a particular dislike to musk. 
Wisdom, White Mulberry-tree. The ancients called 
the White Mulberry the wisest of trees, because 
it is very late before it unfolds its leaves, in which 
respect it is the reverse of the almond-tree. A 
spray of the almond-tree tied up with one of the 
mulberry intimates that wisdom ought to temper 

You are cold, Hortensia. The Hortensia is a plant 
of recent introduction into our European gardens. 
Though its clusters of flowers are alternately 
tipped with white, red, and purple ; though its gen- 
eral figure is showy, and it looks well in a room ; 
still the eye soon tires of its cold beauty : it is the 
image of a coquet, who, destitute, of the qualities 
of the mind, and heart, strives to please solely by 
the arts of dress. 

You are my divinity, American Cowslip. The 
elegant and single stalk of this plant rises from 
the centre of a tuft of broad leaves that lie flat on 
the ground. In April, it is crowned with twelve 
pretty pink flowers reversed. Linneus has given 


to it the name of Dodecatheon, which signifies 
twelve divinities. It is, perhaps, rather a pom- 
pous name for so modest a flower ; but on that 
point botanists, and especially lovers, are not very 

You are perfect, Pineapple. The Pineapple, sur- 
rounded with its handsome leaves, and surmounted 
by a crown, which is employed for its propagation, 
has the appearance of being sculptured in pale 
gold. It is so beautiful that it seems to be made 
only to delight the eye ; so delicious that it com- 
bines the varied flavours of all our best fruits : and 
so fragrant, that it would deserve to be cultivated 
solely for the sake of its perfume. 

Vim are radiant ivith charms*, Ranunculus. Early 
in spring, the dazzling Ranunculus adorns our 
gardens with its brilliant flowers, glowing with 
a thousand colours, resplendent with a thousand 
charms. Scarcely any plant rewards the culti- 
vator with such a striking diversity of tints, or 
affords so rich a view. 

Your charms are engraven on my heart, Spindle- 
tree. This shrub is thus named, because its wood 
is used for making spindles. Crayons also are 
prepared from it. It is in request with sculptors 


and turners. Tf its wood is valuable to artists 
the shrub which furnishes it ought to be esteemed 
by the farmer : the hedges formed with it appear 
in autumn loaded with red berries that produce a 
very pretty effect. 

Your looks freeze me, Ice plant. The leaves of 
this singular plant are covered with transparent 
vesicles full of water. When the plant is in the 
shade, it looks as if covered with dew ; when in 
the sunshine, it seems to be powdered with frozen 
crystals, that give it a brilliant appearance, and 
hence it derives its name. 

Your presence revives me, Rosemary. Hungary 
water is made with Rosemary : it refreshes the 
spirits and dispels dizziness and fainting. 

Your qualities surpass your charms, Mignonette. 
Page 156. 

Youth, White Lilac. From the purity of colour 
and the short duration of its beautiful clusters of 
blossom, White Lilac is the emblem of youth, of 
that fleeting and inestimable blessing which all 
the treasures of the world cannot redeem. 





Achillea millefolia, 
Adonis, Flos, 


, field, 




The Arts. 


Painful Recollections 











Apple blossom, 





My regrets follow you to 

the Grave. 

Aster, China, 



Balm of Gilead, 






Sourness of Temper. 








Frivolous Amusement. 









Calm Repose. 







Touch me not. 





Cactus, Virginia, 

Canterbury Bell, 












Convolvulus, night, 




Cornel Cherry-tree, 

Cowslip, American, 


Crown Imperial, 




Good Education. 

Do me justice. 


Beloved Daughter. 







Hidden Merit. 




You are my divinity 











, garden, 

I share your sentiments, 

, wild, 

I will think of it. 


The rustic Oracle. 

Day-Lily, yellow, 




Dock, patience, 















I feel your kindness. 




Forget me not. 



Fuller's Teasel, 


Geranium, pencilled- 




, scarlet, 



Geranium, sorrowful, 

, wild, 


Melancholy Mind. 
Steadfast Piety. 





Heliotrope, Peruvian, 









Peace, Reconciliation. 

Think of me. 


Devoted Attachment. 





Generous and Devoted 

You are cold. 
Game, Play. 



Your looks freeze me. 
I attach myself to you. 





, Carolina, 


, Indian, 

I attach myself to you. 












I die if neglected. 



Leaves, Dead, 

Sadness, Melancholy. 


First emotions of love. 

, white, 




Lily of the Valley, 

Return of Happiness. 


Conjugal Love. 



London Pride, 








Maiden Hair, 














, and Cypress, 


Marvel of Peru, 


Meadow Saffron, 

My best days are past. 


Coquetry, Desire to 



Your qualities surpass 

your Charms. 




I surmount all Diffi- 





Maternal Love. 

Mulberry-tree, black, 

I shall not survive you, 

, white, 















Nightshade, bitter- 



, enchan- 









Ophry's, spider, 






Orchis, Bee, 




Passion Flower, 



Warmth of feeling. 


Tender recollections. 


You are perfect. 


Pure Love. 

, yellow, 





Keep your promises. 

, wild, 


Poplar, Black, 


, White, 






, White, My Bane, my Antidote. 

Potato, Beneficence. 

Primrose, Childhood. 

, large-flowered 

Evening, Inconstancy. 

Privet, Prohibition. 




You are radiant with 






, Hundred-leaved, 


, Monthly, 

Beauty ever new. 

, Musk, 

Capricious Beauty. 

, Single, 


, White, 


, Withered, 

Fleeting Beauty. 

, Yellow, 



A young Girl. 


A heart unacquainted 

with Love. 




Rue, Wild, 



Sainfoin, shaking, 

St. John's wort, 


Sensitive plant, 



Sorrel, Wood 



Star of Bethlehem, 

, Ten Week, 

Straw, Broken, 

, Whole, 


Your presence revives 


Beware of Excess. 


Your charms are engra- 
ven on my heart. 

Lasting Beauty. 
Rupture of a Contract. 
False Riches. 



Sweet Sultan, 

Fraternal Love. 

Tansey, Wild, 

Tendrils of climbing 






Tremella Nostoc. 




Tussilage, sweet- 

I declare war against 


Deceitful Charms. 

Dangerous Pleasures. 
Declaration of Love. 
Justice shall be done to 


-, Greek, 

An accommodating 




Venus's Looking-glass, 





, White, 






Innocence, Candour. 

Willow, Weeping, 

Fidelity in Misfortune. 









The Roman Catholic Monks, or the observers of 
the Roman Catholic ritual, have compiled a Cata- 
logue of Flowers for every day in the year, and 
dedicated each flower to a particular saint, on account 
of its blooming about the time of that saint's festival. 
These appropriations form a complete Calendar of 
the Flowers. 

The figures attached express the year in which 
the saint died. 


1. Laurustinus, Vibernum tinus. St. Faine, or 
Fanchea, an Irish saint of the sixth century. 


2. Groundsel, Senecio vulgaris. St. Macarius of 

Alexandria, 394. 

3. Iris, Persian, Iris persica. St. Genevieve, pa- 

troness of Paris, 422. 

4. Hazel, Corylus avellana. St. Titus, disciple of 

St. Paul. 

5. Hellebore, Helleborus fsetidus. St. Simeon 

Stylites of Rome. 

6. Moss, screw, TorUda rigida, St. Nilammon. 

7. Laurel, Portugal, Prunus lusitanica. St. Ken- 


8. Tremella, yellow, Tremella deliquescens. St. 

Gudula, patroness of Brussels. 

9. Laurel, common, Primus lauro-cerassus, or com- 

mon small-fruited cherry. St. Marciana of 

10. Gorse, or Furze, Ulex europseus. St. William 

of Bourges, 1207. 

11. Moss, early, Bryum hornum. Swan-neck 

thread-moss. St. Theodosius. 

12. Moss, hygrometric, Funaria hygrometrica. St. 


13. Yew-tree, common, Taxus baccata. St. Ve- 

ronica, a nun of Milan, 1497. 


14. Strawberry, barren, Fragavia sterilis. St. 

Hilary, 368. 

15. Ivy, Hedera helix. St. Paul, the first hermit. 

16. Nettle, common red Dead, Lamium purpureum. 

St. Marcellus, Pope. 

17. Anemone, garden, Anemone hortensis. St. 

Anthony, patriarch of monks, 251. 

18. Moss, four-toothed, Bryum pellucidum. St. 

Prisca, a Roman martyr. 

19. Nettle, white Dead, Lamium album. St. Mar- 

tha, a Roman martyr, 270. 

20. Nettle, woolly Dead, Lamium Gargaricum. 

St. Fabian, Pope. 

21. Hellebore, black, Helleborus niger. St. Agnes, 

a special patroness of purity ; beheaded at 
the age of thirteen, 304. 

22. Grass, early whitlow, Draba -verna. St. Vin- 

cent, a Spanish martyr. 

23. Peziza, Peziza acetabolum. St. Raymond of 

Pennafort, 1275. 

24. Moss, stalkless, P has cum muticum. St. Timo- 

thy, disciple of St. Paul, 250. 

25. Hellebore, winter, Helleboris hyemalis. The 

Conversion of St. Paul. 


26. Butter-bur, white, Tussilago alba, or Colt's-foot. 

St. Polycarp. 

27. Moss, earth, Phasctim cuspidatum. St. Chry- 


28. Daisy, double, Bellis perennis plenus. St. 

Margaret of Hungary, 1271. 

29. Fern, flowering, Osmunda regalis. St. Francis 

of Sales, 1622. 

30. Spleen-wort, .Isplenium trichomanes. St. Mar- 


31. Hart's Tongue, or Spleen-wort, Asplenium 

scolope?idrium. St. Marcella, 410. 


1. Moss, lesser water, Fontinalis minor. St. Ig- 

natius ; and Bay-tree, Laurus nobilis. St. 
Bridget, patroness of Ireland. 

2. Snow-drop, Gala?ithus nivalis. Purification of 

the Virgin Mary. 

3. Moss, great water, Fontinalis anti-pyretica. St. 

Blase of Armenia, 316. 

4. Moss, common hair, or Goldilocks, Polytrichum 

commune. St Jane, or Queen Joan, 1505, 


Bay, Indian, Laurus Indica. St. Margaret of 

5. Primrose, common, Primula vulgaris. St. Aga- 

tha, a Sicilian martyr. 
Primrose, red, Primula acaulis. St. Adelaide, 

6. Hyacinth, blue, Hyacinthus orientalis. St. 

Dorothy, 308. 

7. Cyclamen, round-leafed, Cyclamen coum. St. 

Romauld, 1027. 

8. Moss, narrow-leafed sping, minium androgynum. 

St. John of Malta, 1213. 
6. Narcissus Roman, J\"arcissus Romanus. St. 
Apollonia, 249. 

10. Mezereon, Daphne mezereon, St. Scholastica, 

Moss, silky fork, .Mnium heteromallum. St. 
Coteris, fourth century. 

11. Primrose, red, Primula verna rubra. St. 

Theodora, empress, 367. 

12. Anemone, noble Liverwort, Anemone hepatica. 

St. Eulalia of Barcelona. 

1 3 . Poly anthos, Primula Polyanthos. St. Catherine 

de Ricci, 1589. 

14. Crocus, yellow, Crocus mwsiacus, or Crocus 


aureus. St. Valentine, the lovers' saint. 
He was a priest at Rome, and married there 
about the year 270. 

15. Crocus, cloth of gold, Crocus sulphureus. St. 

Sigifred, bishop of Sweden, 1002. 

16. Primrose, lilac, Primula 'acaulis plena. St. 


17. Crocus, Scotch, Crocus susianus. St. Flavian, 

archbishop of Constantinople, 449. 

18. Speedwell, wall, Veronica venius arvensis. 

St. Simeon, bishop of Jerusalem, 116. 

19. Speedwell, field, Veronica agrcslis. St. Barba- 

tus, patron of Benevento, bishop, 6S2. 

20. Cynoglossum omphalodes, or C. lusitanicum. 

St. Mildred, abbess of Munster. 

21. Crocus, white, Crocus albus. St. Servianus, 

bishop, 452. 

22. Margaret, herb, Bellis perennis. St. Margaret 

of Cortona, 1297. 

23. Apricot-tree, Prunus armeniaca. St. Milburge 

of England. 

24. Fern, great, Osmunda regalis. St. Ethelbert, 

King of Kent. 

25. Peach blossom, *1mygdalun persica. St. Wal- 

burg, abbess, of Swabia, Germany. 


26. Periwinkle, lesser, Tinea minor. St. Victor, 

seventh century. 

27. Lungwort, Pulmonaria officinalis. St. Lean- 

cer, bishop, 596. 

28. Crocus, purple, Crocus vermis. St. Proterius, 

patriarch of Alexandria, 557. 


1. Leek, common, Allium porrum. St. David of 

Wales, archbishop, 544. 

2. Chickweed, dwarf mouse ear, Ceraslium pumilum. 

St. Chad, or Ceada, martyr, under the Lom- 
bards, in the sixth century. 

3. Marigold, golden fig, ^Mesembvyanthemum au- 

reum. St. Cunegunda, empress, 1040. 

4. Chickweed, common, Alsine media. St. Casi- 

mir, prince of Poland, 1458. 

5. Hellebore, green, Helleborus viridis. St. Adrian, 


6. Lily, Lent, Pseudo narcisstis multiplex. St. 

Colette, bishop, 

7. Daffodil, early, JVarcissus simplex. St. Per- 

petua, martyred under the emperor Severus, 


8. Rose, ever-blowing, Rosa Semper/lor ens. St. 

Kosa, of Viterbo, 1261. 
Jonquil, great, Narcissus Isetus. St. Felix, 

9. Daffodil, hoop-petticoat, Narcissus bulbocodium. 

St. Catherine of Bologna, 1463. 

10. duckweed, upright, Veronica triphyllos. St. 

Droctavaeus, abbot, 580. 

11. Heath, Cornish Erica vagans. St. Eulogius 

of Cordova, 851. 

12. Ixia, or crocus-leaved Misletoe, Ixia bulboco- 

dium, or Visciun albus bulbus. St. Gregory 
the Great, Prsetor of Rome, 574. 

13. Heart's Ease, Violo tricolor. St. Euphrasia, 


14. Bindweed, mountain, Soldanela alpina, St. 

Maud or Matilda, queen, 968. 

15. Colt's-foot, common, Tussilago far far a. St. 

Zachary, Pope, 752. 

16. Daffodil, nodding, Narcissus nutans. St. Julian 

of Cilicia. 

17. Violet, sweet, Viola odorata. St. Gertrude, 

abbess, 626. 
Shamrock, White Trefoil, Trifolium repens. 
St. Patrick, apostle of Ireland. 


18. Leopard's bane, great, Doronicumpardalianches. 

St. Cyril, archbishop of Jerusalem, 386. 

19. Star of Bethlehem, yellow, Ornithogalum 

luteum. St. Joseph, spouse of the Virgin 

20. Violet, dog's, Viola canina. St. Wolfram, 

archbishop of Sens, 720. 

21. Fumitory, bulbous, Fumaria bulboza. St. 

Bennet or Benedict, founder of the Order of 
Benedict, of Rome, 543. 

22. Ficaria verna. St. Catherine of Sweden, abbess, 


23. Daffodil, peerless, JYarcissiis incomparabilis. 

St. Alphonsus Turibius, archbishop of Lima, 

24. Saxifrage, golden, Chrysosplenium oppositi- 

folium. St. Irenseus, bishop of Sirmium, 

25. Marigold, Calendula officinalis. Annunciation 

of the Virgin Mary. 

26. Henbane, nightshade-leafed, Hyosciamus sco- 

palia. St. Braulio, bishop of Saragossa, 

27. Jonquil, sweet, Narcissus odorus. St. John of 

Egypt, hermit, 394. 


28. Leopard's bane, Doronicum plant agineum. 

St. Priscus, 260. 

29. Ox-lip, or great Cowslip, Primula elatior. St. 

Eustatius, abbot, 625. 
Fumitory, Fumaria officinalis. St. Jonas, 

30. Water-cress, Cardamine hirmta. St. John of 

Daffodil, lessor, J\'arcissus minor. St. Zosi- 
mus, bishop of Syracuse, 660. 

31. Benjamin-tree, Laurus benzoin. St. Benjamin, 

deacon, martyr, 424. 


1. Mercury, French annual, Jferrurialis annua. 

St. Hugh, bishop, 1132. 

2. Violet, white, Viola alba. St. Francis of Paula, 

a native of Calabria. 

3. Alkanet, evergreen, Jnchnsa sempervirens. St. 

Agape, 304. 

4. Crown Imperial, red, Friiillaria imperialis. St. 

Isidore, bishop of Seville, 636. 

5. Crown Imperial, yellow, Friiillaria imperialis 

lufea. St. Vincent Ferrer, 1419. 


6. Hyacinth, starch, Hyacinthus racemosus, St. 

Sixtus I., Pope. 

7. Anemone, wood, Anemone nemorosa. St. 

Aphraates, fourth century. 

8. Ground-Ivy, Glechoma hederacea, St. Diony- 

sius, bishop of Corinth. 

9. Polyanthos. red, Primula. St. Mary, of Egypt, 


10. Violet, pale, Viola tonbrigens, St. Mechtildes, 

abbess, fourteenth century. 

11. Dandelion, Leontodon taraxacum. St. Leo 

the Great, Pope, 461. 

12. Saxifrage, great thick-leafed, Saxifraga crassi- 

folia. St. Zeno, bishop, 380. 

13. Narcissus, green, Narcissus viridijlorus. St. 

Hermenegild, martyr, 586. 

14. Borage, common, Boraga officinalis. St. Lid- 

wina, 1184. 

15. Stitchwort, greater, Stellaria holestea. St. 

Peter Conzales, 1246. 

16. Tulip, yellow, Tidipa silvestris. St. Joachim 

of Sienna, 1305. 

17. Arum, Friar's cowl, broad-leafed, Arum arisa- 

rum. St. Stephen of Citeaux, abbot, 1 1 34. 


18. Narcissus, musk, Narcissus moschahis. St. 

Apollonius, 186. 

19. Garlic, Allium ursinum. St. Leo IX., Pope, 


20. Snowflake, spring, Leucoium vernum* St. 

Agnes of Monte Pulciano, 1317. 

21. Narcissus, cypress, Narcissus orientalis albus. 

St. Anselm, Archbishop of Canterbury. 

22. Crowfoot, wood, or Goldilocks, Ranunculus 

auvicomus. St. Rufus of Glendaloch. 

23. Harebell, Hyacinlhns non scriptus. St. George 

the martyr, patron of England. 

24. Black thorn. Primus spinosa. St. Fidelis. 

25. Tulip, clarimond, Tulipa precox. St. Mark, 

the Evangelist. 

26. Erysimum, yellow, Erysimum barbarea. St. 

Richarius, abbot, 645. 

27. Daffodil, great, Narcissus major. St. Anasta- 

sius, Pope, 401. 

28. Arum, spotted, Arum maculatum. Saints 

Didymus and Theodora, 304. 

29. Herb Robert, Geranium Robertianum. St. Ro- 

bert, abbot of Molesme, 1110. 

30. Cowslip, Primula veris. St. Catherine of 

Sienna, 1380. 



1. Tulip, Gesner, Tidipa gesnerina. St. Philip, 

supposed to have been the first of Christ's 
Bachelor's Button, Lychnis dioica. St. James 
the just and the less, apostle, martyred in the 
tumult in the Temple. 

2. Charlock, Ruphanus raphanislrum, or Sinapvs 

arvensis. St. Athanasius, patriarch of 
Alexandria, 373. 

3. Narcissus, poetic, Narcissus poeticus. The 

discovery of the Cross, 326. 

4. Stock Gilliflower, Cheiranthus i?ica?ius. St. 

Monicla, mother of St. Augustine. 

5. Apple-tree, Pyrus mains. Sts. Angelus and 

Pius V. Pope, 1572. 

6. Globe Flower, bright-yellow, Trollius europseus. 

St. John Damascene, 780. 

7. Globe Flower, Asiatic, bright-orange, Trollius 

asiaticus. St. John of Beverly. 

8. Jjily of the Valley, Convallaria majalis. St. 


9. Lily of the Valley, Convallaria multifora. St. 

Gregory of Nazianzen, 389. 


10. Peony, slender-leafed, Psconia tennifolia. St. 

Comgal, Irish abbot, 601. 

11. Asphodel, Lancashire, Asphodehis lutens. St. 

Mammertus, archbishop of Vienna, 477. 

12. Iris, German, Iris Germanica. St. Gerinanus, 

patriarch of Constantinople, 733. 

13. Comfrey, common, Symphytum officinalis. St. 

John the silent, bishop, 558. 

14. Peony, common, Pseonia officinalis, and Peony, 

corrallinc, P. corrallina. St. Pontius, 258. 

15. Poppy, Welsh, Papavtr cambricum. St. 

Dympna, seventh century. 

16. Star of Bethlehem, great, Ornilhogalum umbel- 

latum. St. John Nepomucene, 1383. 

17. Poppy, early red, Papaver argemone. St. 

Paschal, 1592. 

18. Mouse-ear, or Hawkwced, Hieracium pilosella. 

St. Eric, King of Sweden, 1151. 

19. Monk's hood, Aconilum napellus. St. Dun- 

stan, archbishop of Canterbury, 988. 

20. Horse Chestnut, ^Eschylus hippocastanum. 

St. Bernardine of Sienna, 1444. 

21. Ragged Robin, Lychnis fos cvculi. St. Felix 

of Cantalico, 1587. 


22. Star of Bethlehem, yellow, Tragopogon pra- 

tensis. St. Yvo, 1303. 

23. Lilac, Syringa vulgaris. St. Julia, fifth cen- 

24 Poppy, monkey, Papaver orientale. St. Vin- 
cent, of Lerins, 450. 

25. Herb Bennet, common, Geum urbanum. St. 

Urban, Pope, 223. 

26. Rhododendron, purple, Rhododendron ponti- 

cum. St. Augustine, archbishop of Canter- 
bury, 604. 
Azalea, yellow, Azalea pontica. St. Philip 
Neri, 1595. 

27. Buttercup, Ranunculus acris. St. John, Pope, 

Bachelor's Button, yellow, Ranunculus acris 
plenus. St. Bede. 735. 

28. Iris, lurid, Iris lurida. St. Germain, bishop of 

Paris, 576. 

29. Blue-bottle, Centaurea mo?itana. St. Cyril, 

about 275. 

30. Spearwort, lesser, Ranunculus Jlammula. St. 

Ferdinand III. Confessor, King of Castile 
and Leon, 1252. 

31. Lily, yellow Turk's cap, Lilium pomponium. 

St. Petronilla, first century. 



1. Rose, yellow, Rosa lutea. St. Justin, martyr, 


2. Pimpernel, common scarlet, Anagallis arvensis. 

St. Erasmus, 303. 

3. Rose of Meaux, Rosa provincialis . St. Cecilius, 


4. Indian Pink, Dianthus chinensis. St. Quirinus, 

bishop, 304. 

5. Rose, three-leafed China, Rosa sinica. St. 

Boniface, first missionary from England to 
Friesland ; afterwards archbishop of Mentz, 
and primate of Germany and Belgium, 
eighth century. 

6. Pink, common, Dianthus deltoides. St. Nor- 

bert, 1134. 

7. Centaury, red, Chironia centaureum. St. Paul, 

bishop of Constantinople, 350. 

8. Money-wort, Herb Two-pence, or creeping 

Loosestrife, Lysimaclda nummularia. St. 
Medard, bishop, sixth century. 

9. Barberry, Berberis vulgaris. St. Columba, 



10. Iris, bright yellow, Iris pseudo-acovus. St. 

Margaret, queen of Scotland, 1093. 

11. Daisy, midsummer, Chrysanthemum leucan- 

themum. St. Barnabas, apostle, first cen- 

12. Rose, white dog, Rosa arvensis. St. John, 

hermit, 1479. 

13. Ranunculus, garden, Ranunculus asiaticus. 

St. Anthony of Padua, 1231. 

14. Basil, sweet, Ocimum basilicum. St. Basil, 

archbishop, 379. 

15. Sensitive plant, JWimosa sensitiva. St. Vitus, 

martyr, fourth century. 

16. Rose, Moss, Rosa muscosa. St. Julietta, mar- 

tyr, 304. 

17. Monkey -flower, yellow, Mimnlus luteus. St. 

Nicandeo, about 303. 

18. Poppy, horned, Chelidoniunt glaucum. St. 

Marina, eighth century. 

19. La Julienne de Nuit, Hesperis tristis. St. 

Juliana Falconieri, 1340. 

20. Poppy, doubtful, Papaver clubium. St. Silve- 

rius, Pope, 538. 

21. Bugloss, Viper's, Eckium vulgare. St. Aloy- 

sius, 1591. 



22. Canterbury Bell, Campanula medium. St. 

Paulinus, bishop of Nola, 431. 

23. Ladies' Slipper, Cypripedium calceolus. St. 

Etheldreda, 679. 

24. St. John's wort, Hypericum pulchrum. Na- 

tivity of St. John the Baptist. 

25. Sweet William, Dianthus barbatus. St. Wil- 

liam of Monte Vergine, 1 142. 

26. Sowthistle, Alpine hairy blue, Sonchus cseru- 

leus. St. Reingarda, 1135. 

27. St. John's wort, perforated, Hypericum perfora- 

tum. St. John of Montier, sixth century. 

28. Cornflower, blue, Ceutaurea cyanus. St. Ire- 

naeus, bishop of Lyons, 202. 
20. Rattle, yellow, Rhinanthus crista-galli. St. 

Peter the apostle. 
30. Cistus, yellow, Cistus helianthemum. St. 

Paul the apostle. 


1. Agrimony, Agrimonia eupatoria. St. Aaron. 

2. Lily, white, Lilium candidum. Virgin Mary. 


3. Mallow, common, JMalva sylvestris, St. Pho- 

cas, a gardener, 303. 

4. Day Lily, tawny, Hemerocallis fidva. St. Ulric, 

bishop of Augsburg. 

5. Rose, double yellow, Rosa sulphurea. St. 

Edana, of Elphin and Tuam. 

6. Hawkweed, Crepis barbata. St. Julian, ancho- 

rite, fourth century. 

7. Nasturtium, Tropseohan majus. St. Felix, bishop 

of Nantes, 584. 

8. Primrose, evening (Enothera biennis. St. Eliza- 

beth, queen of Portugal, 1336. 

9. Sowthistle, marsh, Sonchus palustris. St. 


10. Snapdragon, speckled, Antirrhinum triphyllum. 

Saints Rufina and Secunda, 257. 

1 1 . Lupine, yellow, Lupinus flavus. St. James, 

bishop of Nisibis, 350. 

12. Snapdragon, great, Antirrhinum purpureum. 

St. John Gualbert, abbot, 1073. 

13. Lupine, yellow, Lupinus hursutus. St. Euge- 

nius, bishop, 505. 

14. Lupine, red, Lupinus per ennis. St. Bonaven- 

ture, cardinal bishop, 1274. 


15. Marigold, small Cape, purple and white, Calen- 

dula pluvialis. St. Swithen, bishop, 862. 

16. Convolvulus, Convolvulus purpureas. St. Eu- 

stathius, patriarch of Antioch, 338. 

1 7. Sweet-Pea, Lathyrus odoratus. St. Marcellina, 


18. Marigold, autumn, Chrysanthemum coronarium. 

St. Bruno, bishop, 1125. 

19. Hawkweed, golden, Hieracium auranticum. 

St. Vincent de Paule, 1660. 

20. Dragon's head, Virginian, Dracocephalus Vir- 

gi7iia?ium. St. Margaret of Antioch. 

21. Lily, Piladelphian, LiliumPhiladelphicum. St. 


22. Lily, African, Agapanthus umbellatus. St. 

Mary Magdalen. 

23. Musk flower, Scabius atro-purpurea. St. 

Apollinaris, bishop of Ravenna. 

24. Lupine tree, Lupinus arboreus. St. Lupus, 

bishop, 478. 

25. Herb Christopher, white, Actxa spicata. St. 


26. Chamomile, or Corn Feverfew, Matricaria 

chamomilla. St. Ann, mother of the Virgin 


27. Loose-strife, Ly thrum salicaria. St. Panta- 

leon, 303. 

28. Groundsel, mountain, Senecio montanus' St. 

Innocent I., Pope, 417. 

29. Chironia, red, Chironia centaurium. St. Martha. 

30. Mullein, white, Verbascum lychnitis. St. Ju- 

lietta, 303. 

31. Mullein, yellow, Verbascum virgatum. St. 

Ignatius, of Loyola, founder of the Jesuits, 


1. Stramony, or Thorn-apple, Datura stramonium. 

St. Peter and Vincula. 

2. Tiger Lily, Lilium tigrum. St. Alfrida, 834. 

3. Hollyhock, Althea rosea. Discovery of the relics 

of St. Stephen, 415. 

4. Bluebell, Campanula rotundifolia. St. Do- 

minic, founder of the Friar Preachers, 1221. 

5. Lily, Egyptian water, JVelumbo nilotica. St. 

Mary ad Nives. 

6. Meadow Saffron, Colchicum autumnale. Trans- 

figuration of our Lord on Mount Tabor. 


7. Amaranth, common, Jlmaranthus hypochondria- 

cus. St. Cajetan, 1547. 

8. Love lies bleeding, Ameranthus procu?nbens. 

St. Hormisdas. 

9. Ragwort, yellow, Seneciojacobsea. St. Romanus. 

10. Balsam, lmpatiens balsamea. St. Lawrence, 

martyr, 258. 

11. China Aster, Aster Chinensis. St. Susanna, 

third century. 

12. Sowthistle, great corn, Sonchus arvensis. St. 

Clare, abbess, 1253. 

13. Groundsel, marsh, Great Fen Rag-wort, or 

Bird's Tongue, Senecio paludosus. St. 

14. Zinnia, Zinnia elegans. St. Eusebius, third 


15. Virgin's Bower, white, Clematis vitalba. As- 

sumption of the Virgin Mary ; or the mira- 
culous ascent of her body into heaven. 

16. Lily, belladonna, Amaryllis belladonna. St. 

Hyacinth, 1257. 

17. Snapdragon, Toadflax, Antyrrhinum li?iaria. 

St. Manus, 275. 

18. Marigold, African, Tagetes erecta. St. Helen, 

empress, 382. 


19. Timothy grass, branched Cat's Tail grass. 

Phleum panniculatam, or Ph. asperum. 
St. Timothy, 304. 

20. Dandelion, Leontodon serotinus. St. Bernard, 

abbot, 1153. 

21. Marigold, French, Tagetes patula. St. Jean 

Francois de Chantal, 1641. 

22. Timothy, common Cat's Tail grass, Phleum 

pratense. St. Timothy, 311. 

23. Tansy, common, Tanacctum vulgare. St. 

Philip Beniti, 1285. 

24. Sunflower, tall, Helianthus amiuus. St. Bar- 

tholomew, apostle. 

25. Sunflower, perennial, Helianthus multijlorus. 

St. Louis, king of France, 1270. 

26. Amaryllis, banded, Amaryllis vitata. St. Ze- 

phyrinus, Pope, 219. 

27. Hawkweed, hedge, Hieracium umbellatum. St. 

Caesarius, archbishop of Aries, 542. 

28. Golden rod, Solidago, Virga aurea. St. Au- 

gustine, bishop, 430. 

29. Hollyhock, yellow, Althea flava. St. Sabinus, 

king, about 697. 

30. Lily, Guernsey, Amaryllis samiensis. St. Rose 

of Lima, 1617. 


31. Pheasant's eye, Adonis aittumnalis. St. Ray- 
mund Nonnatus, 1240. 


1. Orphne, or livelong, great, Sedum telephium. 

St. Giles, patron of beggars and cripples. 
Born at Athens ; abbot of Nismes, in France ; 
died, 750. 

2. Golden rod, Solidago. St. Margaret, thirteenth 


3. Flea-bane, common yellow, Inula dysenterica, 

St. Simeon Stylites, the younger, 592. 

4. Soapwort, pale pink, Soponaria officinalis. St. 

Rosalia, 11 GO. 

5. Mushroom, or champignon, Agaricus campestris. 

St. Laurence Justinian, first patriarch of 
Venice, 1455. 

6. Dandelion, Leontodon autmnnalis. St. Pambo, 

of Nitria, 385. 

7. Starwort, golden, Aster solidaginoides. St. Cloud, 


8. Starwort, Italian blue, Aster amellus. St. Adrian, 



9. Golden rod, Canadian, Solidago canadensis. St. 

Omer, 607. 

10. Crocus, autumnal, Crocus autumnalis. St. Pul- 

cheria, empress, 453. 

11. Meadow Saffron, variegated, Colchicumvariega- 

tum. St. Hyacinthus, 257. 

12. Passion-flower, semilunar, Passiflora peltata. 

St. Earns with, abbess, seventh century. 

13. Crocus, officinal, Crocus sativus. St. Eulogius, 

patriarch of Alexandria, 608. 

14. Passion flower, blue, Passijlora ccerulea. Ex- 

altation of the Holy Cross, 629. 

15. Saffron, Byzantine, Cclchicum Byzanticum. 

St. Nicetas, fourth century. 

1 6. Starwort, sea-blue, Aster tripolium. St. Editha, 


17. Mallow, narrow-leafed, JMalva angustifolia. 

St. Lambert, bishop, 709. 

18. Staiwort, pendulous, Aster pendulus. St. 

Thomas, archbishop of Valencia, 1555. 

19. Scabius, Devil's bit, Scabiosa succisa. St. 

Lucy, 1090. 

20. Meadow Saffron, common, Colchicum autum- 

nale. St. Eustachius. 


21. Passion flower, fringed-leafed, variegated, Pas- 

si jlora-ciliata. St. Matthew, the Evangelist. 

22. Boletus tree, Boletus arboreus. St. Maurice, 

fourth century. 

23. Starwort, white bushy, Aster dumosus. St. 

Thecla, first century. 

24. Fungus, Agaricus fimetarius. St. Gerard, 

bishop, 1046. 

25. Boletus, great, order Fungi, Boletus bovlnus. 

St. Ceolfrid, abbot, 716. 

26. Golden rod, great, Solidago gigantea. St. 

Justina, 304. 

27. Starwort, white small-leafed N. American, 

Aster muhijlorus. St. Delphina, 1323. 

28. Golden rod, evergreen, Solidago sempervirens. 

St. Eustochium, 419. 

29. Michaelmas Daisy, Aster tradescanti. St. 

Michael and all Angels. 

30. Amaryllis, golden, Amaryllis aurea. St. Je- 

rome, 420. 


1. Amaryllis, lowly, Amaryllis humilis. St. Re- 
migius, bishop of Rheims, 533. 


2. Soapwort, Saponaria officinalis. Feast of the 

holy guardian Angels. 

3. Helenium, downy, Helenium pubescens. St. 

Dionysius, the Areopagite, 51. 

4. Southernwood, dwarf, Artemisia abrotanum. St. 

Francis of Assisi, founder of the order of 
Franciscans, 1226. 

5. Chamomile, starlike, a fungus, Boltonia aster oides, 

St. Placidus, 546. 

6. Feverfew, creeping-rooted, Pyrethrum serotinum. 

St. Bruno, founder of the Carthusian order, 

7. Chrysanthemum, Indian, Chrysanthemum indi- 

cum. St. Mark, Pope, 336. 

8. Maudlin, sweet, Achillea ageratwn. St. Bridget, 


9. Mushroom, milky, Agaricus lactijluus acris, or 

A. Lisieri. St. Denys, patron saint of 

10. Aletris, Cape waved-leafed, Aletris viridifolia. 

St. Francis Borgia, 1572. 

11. Holly, common, Ilex aquifolium. St. Ethel- 

burga, 664. 

12. Fleabane, wavy, Inula undulata. St. Wil- 

fred, bishop of York, 709. 


13. Helenium, yellow smooth, Helenium autwnnale. 

St. Edward, King and Confessor, 1066. 

14. Fleabane, Indian, Inula indica. St. Calixtus, 

Pope, 222. 

15. Sweet Sultan, purple, Centaurea moschata. St. 

Teresa, 1582. 

16. Yarrow, Achillea millefolium. St. Gall, abbot, 


17. Sunflower, dwarf, Helianthus indicus. St. 

Anstrudis, 688. 

18. Mushroom, Agaricus floccosus. St. Luke, 

Evangelist, 63. 

19. Tick-seed, perennial, Coreopsis procera. St. 

Frideswith, patroness of Oxford, eighth 

20. Sweet Sultan, yellow, Centaurea suaveolens. 

St. Artemius, 362. 

21. Silphium, hairy-stalked, Silphium asteriscus. 

St. Ursula, fifth century. 

22. Silphium, rough, three-leafed, Silphium trifolia- 

tum. St. Nunilo, 840. 

23. Starwovt, slender stalked, Aster junceus. St. 

Thcodoret, 3G2. 

24. Starwort, Carolina, Aster carolinus ftexuosus. 


St. Proclus, archbishop of Constantinople, 

25. Starwort, fleabane, Jister Conizoicles. St. 

Crispin, 287. 
Starwort, meagre, Aster miser. St. Cris- 
pinian, 287. — These were brothers and 
martyrs, shoemakers, and patrons of that 

26. Golden rod, late-flowered, Solidago petiolaris. 

St. Evaristus, Pope, 112. 

27. Starwort, floribund, Aster Jloribundus. St. 

Frunientius, apostle of Ethiopa, fourth cen- 

28. Chrysanthemum, late-flowering creeping, 

Chrysserotinum, St. Simon, Apostle, the 
Starwort, scattered, Aster passijlorns. St. 
Jude, apostle. 

29. Narcissus, green autumnal, J\*arcissiis viridi- 

flortis. St. Narcissus, bishop of Jerusalem, 
second century. 

30. Mushroom, mixen, Agaricus fimetarius. St. 

Marcellus, the centurion, 298. 

31. Tick-seed, fennel-leafed, Coreopsis ferulafolia. 

St. Quintin, 287. 



1. Laurustinus, Laurustinus sempervirens. St. 


2. Cherry, winter, Physalis. St. Marcian, 387. 

3. Primrose, Primula vulgaris. St. Flour, 389. 

4. Strawberry tree, Arbutus. St. Brinstan, bishop 

of Winchester, 931. 

5. Cherry, common winter, Physalis alkakengi. 

St. Bertille, abbess of Chelles, 692. 

6. Yew-tree, common, Taxus baccata. St. Leon- 

ard, sixth century. 

7. Furcrsea, Furcrsea gigantea. St. Willebord, 

first bishop of Utrecht, 738. 

8. Alctris, Cape, Veltheimia. The four crowned 

Brothers, martyrs, 304. 

9. Aletris, glaucous-leafed, Veltheimia glauca. St. 

John Lateran. 

10. Fir, Scotch, Pinus sylvestris. St. Nymph a, 

fifth century. 

11. Pine, Weymouth, Pinus strobus. St. Martin, 

bishop, 397. 

12. Aloe, great orange-flowering, Veltheimia, or 

Aletris uvaria. St. Nilus, 390. 


13. Bay, Laurus poetica. St. Homobonus, 1197. 

14. Laurel, Portugal, Ceraciis lusitanica. St. 

Lawrence, archbishop of Dublin, 1180. 

15. Colt's-foot, sweet-scented, Tussilago fragrans. 

St. Gertrude, abbess, 1292. 

16. Hemp, African bow-string, Sanseviera gui- 

neensis. St. Edmund, archbishop of Can- 
terbury, 1242. 

17. Stramony, or Thorn-apple tree, Datura arborea. 

St. Gregory Thaumaturgus, bishop, 270. 

18. Passion-flower, notched-leafed, Passijlora ser- 

ratifolia. Dedication of the Churches of 
St. Peter and St. Paul at Rome. 

19. Passion-flower, apple-fruited, Passijlora mali- 

formis. St. Elizabeth of Hungary, 1231. 

20. Stapelia, red, Stapelia rubra. St. Edmund, 

King and martyr, 870. 

21. Sorrel, wood, Oxalis grandiflora. Presenta- 

tion of the Virgin Mary. 

22. Sorrel, wood, tube-flowered, Oxalis tubifiora. 

St. Cecilia, martyr and patroness of music, 
particularly of sacred music ; supposed to be 
the inventress of the organ, 230. 

23. Sorrel, convex, Oxalis convexula. St. Cle- 

ment, Pope, 100. 


24. Stapelia, starry, Stapelia radiata. St. John of 

the Cross, 1591. 

25. Butterbur, sweet, Tussilago fragrans. St. 

Catherine, patroness of spinsters, third cen- 

26. Sorrel, linear, Oxalis linearis. St. Conrad, 

bishop of Constance, 976. 

27. Sorrel, lupine-leafed, Oxalis hipinifolia, St. 

Virgin, bishop of Salzburg, 784. 

28. Stapelia, variegated, Stapelia variegata. St. 

Stephen the younger, 764. 

29. Sphenogyne, 5. pilifora. St. Saturninus, bishop, 


30. Sorrel, three-coloured, Oxalis tricolor. St. 

Sapor, bishop. 


1." Stapelia, dark, <S'. pulla, St. Eligius, bishop of 
Noyon, 659. 

2. Geodorum, lemon, Geodorum citrinum. St. 

Bibiania, 363. 

3. Indian tree, Euphorbia tirucalle. St. Francis 

Xavier, 1552. 


4. Gooseberry, Barbadoes, Cactus pereskia. St. 

Chrysologus, 450. 

5. Hibiscus, long-stalked, H. pedunculatus. St. 

Crispina. 304. 

6. Heath, nest-flowered, Erica nudiflora. St. 

Nicholas, archbishop, of Myra, 342. 

7. Achania, hairy, Achania pilosa. St. Ambrose, 


8. Arbor Vita?, American, Thuja occidentalis, 

Blessed Virgin Mary. 

9. Spruce, Corsican, Pinus laricio. St. Leocadia, 


10. Cypress, Portugal, Cupressus pendula. St. 


11. Pine Aleppo, pinus halepensis. St. Damascus, 

Pope, 384. 

12. Heath, crowded, Erica abietina. St. Ead- 

burga, 751. 

13. Arbor Vitse, African, Thuja cupressoides. St. 

Lucy, martyr, of Syracuse, 304. 
14/ Pine, swamp, Pinus palaustris. St. Spiridion, 

archbishop, 348. 
15. Pine, pitch, Pinus resinosa. St. Florence, 




16. Arbor Vitae, Chinese, Thuja orientalis. St. 

Adelaide, empress, 999. 

17. Cedar, white, Cupressus thyoides. St. Olyni- 

pias, 410. 

18. Cypress, New Holland, Cupresses australis. 

St. Winebald, 760. 

19. Heath, two-coloured, Erica bicolor. St. Sam- 

thana, abbess, 738. 

20. Stone-pine, Finns pinea. St. Philogonius, 

bishop of Antioch, 322. 

21. Sparrow 7 - wort, Erica passerina. St. Thomas, 


22. Heath, pellucid, Erica pellucida. St. Cyril, 


23. Cedar of Lebanon, Pinus cedrus. St. Victoria, 


24. Pine, frankincense, Pinus ixda. Sts. Thra- 

silla and Emiliana. 

25. Holly, Ilex aculeata baccifera. Nativity of 

our Saviour. 

26. Heath, purple, Erica purpurea. St. Stephen, 

first martyr. 

27. Heath, flame, Erica fiammea. St. John, the 



28. Heath, bloody-flowered, Erica cricenta. Holy 

Innocents, who suffered from Herod's cruelty. 

29. Heath, Erica genistopha. St. Thomas, arch- 

bishop of Canterbury, 1170. 

30. Ponthieva, glandular, Ponthieva glandulosa. 

St. Anysia, 304. 

31. There is no flower appropriated to this day. 


Acacia, 157. 

, rose, 270. 

Acanthus, 10-2. 
Achillea millefolia, 30C. 
Adonis, Flos. 14(5. 
Agrimony, 303. 
Almond-tree, 41. 
Aloe, 234. 

Amaranth, 220, 261. 
Amaryllis, 2 ;2. 
Anemone, 275. 

, field, 298. 

Angelica, 224. 
Angrec, 297. 
Apple blossom, 231. 
Ash-tree, 278. 
Asphodel, 269. 
Aster, China, 187, 261. 
Autumn, 179. 

Balm of Gi lead, 2(58. 

, gentle, 285 

Balsam, 281. 
Barberry, 299. 
Basil, 278. 
Beech. 394. 
Bilberry, 304. 
Bladder-nut. 276, 

Borage, 265. 
Box-tree, 30!). 
Bramble, 271. 
Broom, 109. 262. 
Buck-bean, 101. 
Bugloss, 82. 
Bulrush, 282. 
Burdock, 282. 
Buttercup, 284. 

Cactus, Virginia, 280. 
Calendar of Flowers, 321. 
Canterbury Bell, 267. 
Catchfly, 299. 
Champignon, 301. 
Cherry-tree, 277. 
Chestnut tree, 270. 
Chicory. 275. 
Cinquefoil. 284. 
Circsea, 300. 
Clematis, 262. 
Clot Bur, 297. 
Clove-tree, 269. 
Columbine, 274. 
Convolvulus, night, 290. 
Coriander, 279. 
Corn, 171. 
Corn-bottle, 271. 

358 INDEX. 

Cornel Cherry-tree, 243. Geranium, rose scented, 292. 

Cowslip, American, 308. , scarlet, 210. 

Cress, 2'J7. , sorrowful, 287. 

Crown Imperial, 241. Grass, 306. 


Cypress, 210. Hawthorn, 67. 

Hazel, 255. 
Daffodil, 03. Heart's ease, 50. 
Daisy, 51. . Heath, 91. 
, garden, 281. Helenium, 303. 

•, wild, 281. Heliotrope, Peruvian, 192. 

Dandelion, 164. lkpatica, 267. 

Day Lily, yellow, 176. Holly, 249. 

Dictionary of the language Hollyhock, 200. 

of flowers, 261. " Honeysuckle, 107. 
Flower, with Hop, 284. 

their emblematic signi- Hornbeam, 290. 

fieations, 309. Horse-chestnut, 77. 

Dittany, 266. Hortensra, 307. 

Dock, patience, 290. Hyacinth, 276. 

Dodder. 287. 

fee-plant. 309. 
Ebony-tree. 264. Introduction, 9. 

Eglantine, 29J. Ipomaea, 280. 

Iris, 288. 
Fennel, 301. Ivy, 236. 

Fig, 286. 
Fir-tree, 270. Jasmine, 132. 

Flax, 280. , Carolina. 161. 

Flower-de-Luce, 273. , Indian, 280. 

Flowers, Calendar of, 317- Jonquil, 271. 
Dictionary of the Juniper, 258. 

Language of, 261. 
. , with Language of Flowers, Dic- 

their emblematic signifi- tionary of, 261. 

cations, 311. Larch, 265. 

Flower-writing, illustration Larkspur. 286. 

of, 260. Laurel, 247. 

Forget-Me-Not, 163. Laurustinus. 244. 

Fraxinella, 273. Lavender, 288. 

Fuller's Teasel, 288. Leaves, Dead, 232. 

Lilac, 79. 
Geranium, pencilled leaf,287. , white, 310. 



Lily, 147. 

Lily of the Valley. 85. 
Linden-tree, 94. 
Liverwort, 267. 
London Pride, 275. 
Lotus, 270. 
Lucern, 106. 

Madder, 266. 
Maiden Hair, 203. 
Mallow, 145. 
Manchineel-tree, 272. 
Mandrake, 294. 
Maple, 295. 
Marigold, 153. 

, prophetic, 291, 

, and Cypress, 

Marvel of Peru, 219. 
Meadow Saffron, 204. 
Meadowsweet, 306. 
Mezeron, 38. 
Mignonette, 156. 
Milkwort, 279. 
Misletoe, 238. 
Moon wort, 274. 
Moss, 241. 
Mulberry-tree, black, 280. 

, white, 307. 

Musk-plant, 307. 
Mvrobolan, 293. 
Myrtle, 104. 
Narcissus, 63. 
Nettle, 267. 

Nightshade, bitter-sweet, 
" 305. 

. Enchanter's, 300 

Nosegay, 27G. 

Oak, '222. 
Olive. 290. 
Ophry's spider, 299. 
Orange-flower, 266. 

Orange tree, 277. 
Orchis bee, 271. 

Parsley, 229. 
Passion Flower, 271. 
Peppermint. 306. 
Periwinkle, 89. 
Pineapple, 308. 
Pink, 137. 

, yellow, 269. 

Plane-tree, 277. 
Plum-tree, 285. 

. wild, 282. 

Poplar, black. 267. 

. white, 304. 

Poppy, 167, 299. 

, wild, 267. 

Potato, 264. 
Primrose, 39. 

, large -flowered 

Evening, 281. 
Privet, 88. 

Quince, 303. 

Ranunculus, 309. 
Reeds, 289. 
Rose, 114. 

, Hundred leaved, 277. 

, monthly, 263. 

, Musk. 263. 

.single, 298. 

, white, 298. 

, withered, 263. 

, vellow. 283. 

Rosebud, 277. 

, white, 279. 

Rosemary, 310. 
Rue, wild, 289. 
Rush, 270. 

Saffron. 264 
Sage. 271. 



Sainfoin, shaking, 262. 
St. John's wort, 130. 
Sardonia. 284. 
Sensitive Plant. 17G. 
Snapdragon, 292. 
Snowdrop, 36. 
Sorrel, wood, 265 
Speedwell, 272. 
Spindle-tree, 309. 
Spring. 35. 

Star of Bethlehem, 294. 
Stock, 150. 

, Ten-week, 293. 

Stonecrop. 304. 

Straw, broken. 183,298. 

. whole. 1H3. 306 

Strawberry. 127. 
Summer, 112. 
Sunflower, J''5. 
Sweet Sultan 278. 
Sweet William. 073. 
Sycamore, 268. 
Syringa, 288. 

Tansov. wild, 280. 
Tendrils of climbing plants, 

Thistle, 301. 
Thorn-apple, 159. 
Thrift 302. 
Thyme. 99. 
Tremella IVostoc, 296. 
Truffle, 301. 
Tuberose, 190. 
Tulip, 71. 

Tussilage, Sweet-scented. 

Valerian, 131,261. 

, Greek, 297. 

Venus's Looking glass, 273. 

Veronica. J7J. 

Vervain. 142. 

Vine. 284. 

Violet, 4P. 

, white, 266. 

Wallflower, 59. 

Walnut. 300. 
Whortleberry, 304. 
Willow, weeping, 44. 
Winter. 231. 
Wormwood, 261. 
Yew, 252.